How to Prepare Tofu With Jollof Rice

Tofu and Jollof rice
Copyright: cokemomo

One of the nicest dishes we had recently using a very crispy tofu was in a classic jollof rice which is a Senegalese/Nigerian dish. So, the West African influence on this dish is emphasised. What about the Asian influence?

Tofu being Japanese of course in origins cross over well with African spice mixes and we used our African Spice Mix no. 1 to smother the tofu so it had the most wonderful African infusion.

Equipment:

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Ingredients:

The African Spice Mix:

  • 5 calabash nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp alligator pepper/melegueta pepper
  • 6 selim peppers
  • 1 tsp black pepper ground

The Tofu

  • 500g-600g silken tofu
  • 1tbsp vegetable oil but use ghee if it is not to be vegan. 
  • ½ tsp salt and ground black pepper

The Jollof Rice

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil 
  • medium-sized fresh plum tomatoes, chopped, or a tin of chopped tomatoes
  • fresh, red poblano peppers or 4 large red bell peppers and with seeds discarded
  • medium-sized red onions with 2 roughly chopped and 1 sliced thinly
  • 1/2 to 1 chilli pepper, or to taste – a padron pepper or a Scotch Bonnet will suffice
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • dried bay leaves
  • 2 teaspoons African Spice mix or Jerk seasoning.
  • 750ml vegetable stock 
  • 2 teaspoons unsalted butter (optional), chopped/divided
  • 300g uncooked white long-grain rice, rinsed
  • Salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Preparation:

The Tofu

  1. Prepare the African spice mix by grinding all the spice ingredients together.
  2. Rinse the tofu well with water. Wrap in paper towels to remove excess moisture. Allow to sit for a half-hour.
  3. Set the wet tofu in the spice mix and thoroughly cover. Do not worry if any excess is carried over as some of the spice mix is added to the rice later.
  4. Cut the tofu into battens and gently fry in oil in a skillet or frying pan with 1 tbsp of oil of choice. Try to just crisp the tofu. If using an air fryer for example than air fry for 15-20 minutes at 180ºC. Carefully turn the tofu round to get even cooking on both sides.
  5. Remove the tofu and place on a board. Season with pepper and salt.

The Sauce And Rice

  1. Into a large frying pan or skillet, add the vegetable oil and heat on a medium setting.
  2. Add the red onions to soften for about 2 minutes. Meanwhile,  put the garlic, ginger, herbs, spice mix in a blender and whizz to a smooth paste.
  3. Add the tomatoes including paste to the onions, fry for another 2 mins then add the ginger and chilli mix.
  4. Add the stock.
  5. Put the rice into a large bowl, cover with cold water and use your hands to wash the grains. Tip the water out then repeat twice until the water runs clear. Add the rice to the pan, turn the heat down to a simmer then cover with foil and a lid so no steam escapes.
  6. Cook for 20 minutes.
  7. Add the butter.
  8. Check the tenderness of the rice and continue to boil until the rice is soft enough.
  9. Add the tofu to the rice and mix thoroughly.
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