First of all, let me say that this is another recipe that looks (ok, maybe not in MY photos) and sounds gourmet and time-consuming, but is really quick, easy, and best-of-all: healthy!
Bok choy (Chinese cabbage), from the Brassica familiy (including cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, turnips, etc), is used in a lot of Chinese recipes. It's great because it's tasty, crispy, and full of nutritional value. It's rich with antioxidants calcium, potassium, beta-carotene, and vitamin A. Tofu, or bean curd, also has Chinese origins. It doesn't have a lot of flavor by itself, but tastes well in flavorful dishes (like stir-fry). Tofu is also low in calories. Additionally, tofu offers plenty of iron, protein, and calcium and is a great alternative to meat. There are two types of tofu: silken and regular. Both types come in soft, medium, firm, and extra firm. Be sure to use regular in firm or extra-firm for stir-fries.
I actually ate the Crispy Tofu at Zengo in Washington DC a few weeks ago (delicious), which inspired me to come up with a tasty Tofu Stir-fry recipe of my own.
1 lb firm or extra-firm regular Tofu
2 Tbsp. Canola Oil
1 Red bell pepper, cut into strips
2 Cloves Garlic, minced (or
1.5 Tsp. Ginger
1 lb Baby Bok Choy, stalk/stem cut into pieces, large leaves cut in half, small leaves left as is (see photo below)
1/4 cup water
1 Tbsp. low-sodium Soy sauce
1/2 Tsp. Crushed Red Pepper
1 Tbsp. Sesame Seeds
1 Tbsp. Cilantro
1. Drain the tofu and blot with paper towels to dry. Cut the tofu into pieces, about 1/2" thick and 1" long.
2. Heat 1 Tbsp. of oil on medium-high heat in Wok (or large skillet). Add the tofu and stir-fry until light gold. Set aside on paper towels.
3. Add remaining oil to wok. Toss in Red pepper, stir for 4 minutes. Add Garlic, Ginger, Baby bok choy stalk/stem pieces. Stir-fry about 1-2 minutes. Add the leaves. Stir fry another 1-2 minutes.
4. Pour the water into the wok. Stir until the water evaporates. Add in the golden tofu, Soy sauce, crushed red pepper and stir for 1-2 minutes.
5. Remove from heat. Sprinkle cilantro and sesame seeds on top of dish and serve immediately!
Optional: Pair with 1/2 cup white sticky rice, brown rice, or Chinese noodles if you'd like more substance.
Note: You are correct (if you noticed). The photos don't include my sprinkling of cilantro and sesame seeds! Oops--I'm human. When I make it again, I'll take new photos.