white plate with char grilled slices of tofu on a rocket, chickpea, cucumber and pickled red onion salad with garnish of mint and pomegranate seeds

Tofu is great at what it does. If your previous experiences of tofu haven’t gone very well, perhaps you need a fresh introduction. No, it doesn’t have a strong flavour, that’s actually its special talent – it works well as a flavour carrier while adding texture to the dish, and that how I use it in my Pomegranate Tofu Salad.

A tofu Middle Eastern inspired dish may sound like an unusual, but Pomegranate Tofu Salad is fresh and full of flavour.  It’s the perfect balance of sweet, sour, peppery and acidity. A colourful plate of colours and textures combine to make Pomegranate Tofu Salad a well balanced tasty plate of food. Tofu isn’t a one trick pony either, it adds a healthy amount of protein to your diet; hopefully this dish will show you its potential.

Serves 4

Pomegranate Tofu Salad

Ingredients:

  • 400g firm tofu drained and pressed
  • 3 tbsp pomegranate molasses
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp white miso paste
  • 400g can of chickpeas 
  • Seeds of half a pomegranate
  • ½ telegraph cucumber (approx 200g)
  • 1 cup rocket leaves
  • 20 mint leaves  – optional extra mint tips for garnish
  • ½ medium Red onion
  • 1 ripe lemon
  • Pinch sea salt

Method:

Cut tofu into strips approximately 10mm thick, pour half of the marinade into a shallow tray and lay the tofu in it. Pour the remainder of the  marinade over the tofu and let marinade for at least 20 minutes each side. If preparing ahead of time, remove tofu from marinade after 40 minutes, save the marinade for the salad dressing.

Peel half a red onion, trim off root and slice thinly from root to top. Put in a small bowl and separate the layers.  Zest a lemon over the bowl, add a pinch of sea salt and mix through the onion slices. Add the juice of the lemon and enough water to just cover the onion slivers. 

Set aside while you finish your prep.

Wash and cut the telegraph cucumber lengthwise town the middle and slice.

Drain a can of chickpeas and put into a small bowl, pour over the saved marinade and season to taste. You can save the aquafaba for a mayo or meringue.

Heat a griddle pan, grill the marinated tofu slices until you have char lines on each side. For an oil-free option, replace olive oil with water – you will need to use a non-stick griddle or oven bake the marinated tofu as it will stick to the cooking surface.

To serve 

Place a handful of rocket on a plate, add cucumber slices, chickpeas,  a few slivers of pickled red onion and top with slices of grilled pomegranate tofu. Finish with some pomegranate seeds and a drizzle of marinade dressing.

Chef’s tip:  You need to marinade the tofu for 40 minutes before cooking, but not for much longer as it will make the marinade cloudy. It can be done a day before, but remove the tofu from the marinade before storing in the fridge overnight. Remember to save the marinade, as this becomes the salad dressing.

If you like pomegranate, you might like to try this Grapefruit and Fennel Salad.

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