It’s hard to believe that our first academic year at PLU is coming to an end! I have my final concert tonight with the PLU concert band and it’s hard to believe that it’s one of the final concerts of the semester! It’s been a whirlwind of an academic and it’s still not quite done yet. With both of us acclimating to new jobs and a new city, the time has flown right by. And while I’m almost done until things ramp back up next fall, Will is not! He actually has yet another business trip coming up! Prepare yourselves to be jealous of this one…..he gets to spend three, yes THREE, weeks in England. Raise your hand if you’re jealous (raises hand). He’ll be working with PLU’s program at Oxford and also likely checking in on other partner programs in the UK and possibly Scotland. (Raises other hand for double jealousy). Unfortunately this was an end-of-budget year decision for his office, so I will not have the opportunity to join him on this trip, but it’s okay because we plan to go back together in the future anyways. He’ll just be working the entire time, right?! RIGHT?!?! He will in fact take a moment of fun to most likely go and visit White Hart Lane, historic home of Spurs, before it is totally demolished this summer, which will be bittersweet after such a phenomenal season from the team. So while I’m sure you, like me, pity the amount of work he’ll be doing, we can all find solace in his one planned excursion for himself. #pitypatrol #sorrynotsorry
RECIPE. This recipe. Glorious! I will claim this is glorious. I had full intentions of making it myself, but we had a scheduling faux-pas and Will ultimately is the one who threw it together. But I don’t care – I know I could have made it and I certainly enjoyed consuming it! This is a throwback to our longtime favorite food blog, Budget Bytes, who we haven’t been frequenting as much lately. Not that the recipes aren’t good, but for longtime readers like us, they’re starting to blend together. However, this one hit the homepage and I was immediately intrigued. Having just made a mango custard (more in a blog post later), I was on a mango kick, especially since it’s prime season. The recipe looks long and complicated, but it’s basically just explaining a lot of little steps. 10/10 would make this again!
Cooking Notes: Will made basically no changes to this recipe because it was straightforward and looked good as is! I will note we used coconut cream instead of coconut milk, because who doesn’t love a little extra creaminess in their dinner?
Mango Coconut Tofu Bowls (adapted from Budget Bytes; serves 4)
1 1/2 cups uncooked basmati rice
1 clove garlic, minced
3/4 tsp salt
13.5-oz. can coconut cream
1 cup water
1 fresh lime
1/4 cup honey
1/2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp corn starch
14-oz. package extra firm tofu
Salt, to taste
2 tbsp corn starch
2 tbsp neutral oil for frying
1 mango, cubed
1 avocado, sliced
2-3 green onions, sliced
Red pepper flakes
This requires some prep! Begin by pressing your tofu – this takes at least 30 minutes, at minimum. See notes below for pressing technique.* Prep your other ingredients by mincing your garlic, cubing your mango, slicing your avocado, and chopping your green onions and cilantro.
Begin cooking your rice. Combine the uncooked rice, minced garlic, salt, coconut milk and water in a medium pot, then place a lid on and bring to a boil over high heat. Once it’s boiling, turn the heat down to low and simmer for 20 minutes. Turn the heat off and let the pot sit undisturbed for another 10 minutes. Fluff the rice with a fork and set aside.
While rice cooks and tofu presses, prepare the glaze. Using a zester, remove a thin layer of zest from the lime, then squeeze the juice from the lime into a separate bowl (equaling about 1/4 cup). Combine the juice with 1/2 tsp of the zest, then add the honey, soy sauce and corn starch in a bowl, stirring until the corn starch and honey are dissolved.
When the tofu is thoroughly pressed, remove from pressing contraption and cut into 1/2″ cubes. Blot with the paper towel to remove any remaining excess moisture, then season the tofu with a pinch of salt. Sprinkle the corn starch over the top and gently toss until all the pieces are coated. Heat oil in a large skillet or wok over medium heat until oil is shimmery. Add the tofu and fry until golden brown, on each side, about 3 minutes per side. Remove the fried tofu and turn the heat down to low. Give the glaze a quick stir, then add it to the skillet. Allow it to begin to simmer, which will make it thicken (good!). Once it’s thick, turn off the heat, add the fried tofu and cubed mango, tossing in the glaze to coat.
Serve rice in the bowl, the top with a scoop of the mango/tofu mixture. Top with sliced green onions, sliced avocado, a pinch of red pepper flakes and a few sprigs of cilantro and enjoy!
*To press tofu, remove from package, draining away the liquid. Wrap the tofu in a few layers of paper towel (or a lint-free dish towel). Place the wrapped tofu between two plates and place something heavy on top, like a 28-oz. can of tomatoes or a cast iron pot. Let it sit for at least 30 minutes or longer.