Wednesday, April 30, 2008

veggie and tofu pita with cucumber yogurt sauce

long time, no blog! i've been cooking a lot but didn't have the opportunity to take pictures. if / when i make bakerella's cake balls (i used chocolate cake and icing dipped in MOAR CHOCOLATE) and mini mac n cheese from food and wine magazine again i'll be sure to blog about it. because i brought both to a potluck and dang, people inhaled them!

anyway, while flipping through a month-old issue of vegetarian times i saw an ad for joyva tahini which featured a recipe for "brain power pita pockets". it looks like the recipe is adapted from a veg times from 10 years ago. the picture looked good to me so i decided to make pita sandwiches this week.

the original recipe called for plain uncooked tofu which kind of grosses me out so my version involves flavoring it with some greek seasoning i picked up on a whim at the grocery store and frying it. the seasoning pretty good, but it tastes quite salty and contains msg. there is a msg-free version on amazon, so i will probably purchase that next time. for a healthier version, feel free to bake the tofu instead.

i wanted to eat my sandwich with some fries but i didn't remember until after i had eaten. this would also go well with some fresh fruit, but unfortunately i'm a carb addict and junk food junkie.

veggie and tofu pita pockets with cucumber yogurt sauce
inspired by the vegetarian times recipe which appeared in the may 1998 issue
makes 6 sandwiches

3 pita breads
1 brick firm tofu, drained and pressed well, sliced into 12 slices
1 large cucumber, sliced thinly
3 plum tomatoes, sliced
a few handfuls of baby spinach leaves
1-2 avocados, sliced into thin wedges
olive oil
a few generous tablespoons of cavender's greek seasoning
cucumber yogurt sauce, recipe below

mix a few tablespoons or more of olive oil with a tablespoon or two of the greek seasoning. try to remove as much moisture fromthe tofu as possible by pressing the slices in between paper towels. place tofu slices on the bottom of a baking dish and and pour seasoning mixture over it. allow it to marinade for at least 15 minutes. you may freeze and defrost the tofu first if you desire a meatier texture. i got impatient and didn't.

while tofu is marinading, prepare the cucumber yogurt sauce and vegetables.

fry tofu in pan using the oil and seasoning mixture. rub the seasoning onto the tofu slices before placing in pan. tofu will be ready when light golden brown and slightly crispy. drain on paper towel.

warm pita using either a toaster or microwave on high for about 30 seconds. cut each pita in half. place two slices of tofu in each pita pocket and add veggies. serve with a dollop of cucumber yogurt sauce.

cucumber yogurt sauce
(i believe i found this on the near east website.)

8 oz plain yogurt
1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and grated
1 tablespoon dill
1 small clove garlic, minced (this gave a very strong garlic flavor, so use less if you are sensitive to the taste)
salt and pepper, to taste

make sure cucumber is dry by wringing out in paper towel or clean dish towel. combine all ingredients in a bowl. store in refrigerator.

i am a horrible insomniac, and after sleeping only 3 hours this morning i found myself wide awake and starving. i made myself another sandwich without reheating the tofu and it was still really good, so don't worry about eating it cold later on.

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