I had been meaning to try out baked tofu with other marinades and today the timing was perfect. I was craving mozzarella sticks. The kind that you get at that are dripping with grease and oozing with cheese. So I thought – why not coat tofu with italian seasonings like basil and garlic, baked it and serve with marinara sauce?
The pesto creates a crust around the tofu which gives a really satisfying crunch. And the inside sometimes tastes like chicken, sometimes like cheese, and sometimes like something entirely different. This recipe works great for an afternoon snack, or even for company – just add toothpicks!
1 block extra firm tofu drained and cut into 1 inch cubes
1 cup basil
1 garlic clove, peeled
1/3-1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup raw sunflower seeds
salt & pepper to taste
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
tomato sauce (for dipping)
Put the garlic, basil, sunflower seeds, salt, pepper, and balsamic vinegar into a food processor and process until all ingredients are very finely chopped. Stream in the olive oil while processing until the mixture is smooth and sauce like. Toss the pesto with the tofu and let marinate for 30 minutes to a few hours on the counter top. Bake at 425° for 15 minutes or until the pesto forms a crust outside the tofu. Serve alongside your favorite tomato sauce for dipping.