I love to cook. Even though I work full time, run a few days a week, take a yoga class once or twice, and try to keep up with my writing (plus cross country starts next week, meaning coaching practice 4-5 days per week), I try to prepare a homemade dinner most nights of the week. I enjoy the time in the kitchen, finding it relaxing to be creative with food (the glass of wine in nice, too!).
While I like following recipes from my favorite cookbooks (current faves include Viva Vegan! , by Terry Hope Romero, Vegan with a Vengeance , by Isa Chandra Moskowitz, the Indian Vegan Kitchen , by Madhu Gadia, and my all time, the Native Foods Restaurant Cookbook , by Tanya Petrovna), I really love making up recipes myself. I have a talent for being able to throw ingredients together, and somehow they taste good. I’m definitely not a trained chef, and my recipes are simple and basic, which is one of the reasons they are very doable for someone with a busy schedule.
With all that being said, I’m like anybody else who works hard. Sometimes I just don’t feel like cooking. Restaurants are an occasional option, but Alan and I really like eating at home. So it was last night when I walked into the kitchen to prepare dinner, I didn’t have a clue as to what I was going to make.
My first thought was to use up the potato salad from the 4th and grill up some bbq tofu. But when I started to think up a marinade for the tofu, I saw some salsa in the fridge and my mind turned in a different direction. The tofu was already pressed, so I put two slices in a dish and poured the salsa on top.
Now, though, the potato salad didn’t seem to fit. It looked like I was going in a Mexican-like direction, so I pulled out a can of pinto beans, and suddenly had a plan.
Easiest Tofu Bake Ever
8 ounces tofu, pressed and cut into slices or wedges
1 cup salsa
1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
2 tablespoons vegan cream cheese
2 tablespoons vegan shredded cheese
Preheat oven to 400
Place the tofu slices in a small baking dish. Pour the salsa over the top, reserving about 2 tablespoons. Lift the tofu to allow some salsa underneath, making sure to spoon it back over the top of the tofu. Pour the beans around the tofu. Spoon the cream cheese on top, then spoon on the rest of the salsa. Cover and bake for a half hour or until the beans and salsa are hot and bubbly. Sprinkle on the cheese and return to the oven, uncovered, until the cheese is melted, about 5 minutes.
Makes two servings
That’s all there is to it. Excluding pressing and baking time, only about 5 minutes of hands on prep work. The tofu absorbs the spicy salsa flavor, the cream cheese makes the sauce, well, creamy, and the beans add a fiber packed punch.
This morning I was well fueled for a four mile run. Last week, my schedule was a little wacky because of the holiday, and I only had time for one short mid-week run. It felt good to get out, even though the temperatures were in the mid eighties by 6:00 this morning. Planning for a little longer run tomorrow, I’m afraid we’re going to have start getting out even earlier in the morning. I’m thinking not only of myself, but my running partner Penny, my Dalmatian. She’s stuck wearing a coat, after all.
I’d planned for yoga class today, but felt tired and unmotivated. Instead, I took a little nap and woke up feeling much better. I’ll definitely make it tomorrow.
As I was writing this post, my cable internet suddenly went out (television and telephone, too), and I lost the last few paragraphs that I was writing, plus I’ll have to go back and reinsert the last few photos. I try to save my work frequently, but I got caught this time. It never seems the same when you have to go back and rewrite from memory. It loses something. I even have Live Writer, which protects you from this sort of thing, but was I using it? No, I was not.
Hopefully I’ll be up and running before too long (before I have to go back and change the ‘todays’ to ‘yesterdays’ ).
Note: The internet came back on and, wonder of wonders, I was able to get my work back! Hurray! Still, I should use Live Writer.
Note #2: The Internet went down again before I could post, but at least everything was saved. Now I am proofing and finishing up on my phone, so please pardon any typos.
If you blog, do you do it online or use an offline program? Which one?
Did you (run, bike, walk, yoga, lift, swim) today? How’d it go?
Do you like to cook? If so, what’s your favorite dish? If not, what’s your favorite restaurant?
Disclosure: I am an Amazon Associate, and if you click on any of the cookbook links and purchase, I receive a small, and I mean very small, percentage.