World Vegetarian Day October 1st

30 Sep

Tallulah's fried okra

Have you ever considered going meatless with your diet? What about trying it out for one day?

This Friday marks World Vegetarian Day, and to celebrate, the food court inside Johnson Commons at Ole Miss is serving up almost an entirely vegetarian menu.

If you want to get an early start on the meat-free party, the University of Mississippi Vegetarian Association is setting up a Hug a Vegetarian booth outside of the Student Union on Thursday from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Visitors to the booth will receive a hug and a vegan cookie! See the Facebook invite here

And, if you can’t make it out to the booth or Johnson Commons, Dr. Olivia Walling J.D. from Ole Miss has pieced together the below Tahini Tofu Salad recipe for you to try out at home–perhaps on a Meatless Monday?

If you really get hooked, there’s a group here in town, the Oxford Community Vegetarians that holds monthly potlucks that feature all types of meat-free dishes–everyone is invited, as long as you bring a dish to share.

UPDATE 10/4: Meatless Mondays have been adopted by Johnson Commons on campus. See more here.

Olivia’s Tofu Tahini Salad (with help from Veganomicon)

Tahini Dressing

  • 8 t. olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic chopped
  • ½ c. tahini
  • 2 t. balsamic vinegar
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Several dashes of black pepper
  • ½ t. paprika
  • ¼ c. lightly packed fresh parsley
  • ½ c. cold water

Heat garlic in 6 t. olive oil in small sauté pan over low heat for 2 minutes until fragrant. Place heated garlic and all other ingredients (including last 2 t. of oil) except parsley in food processor.  Blend until smooth. Add parsley and pulse until it’s small flecks.  Refrigerate for a half hour before serving. It’s good on any veg or as a sandwich spread. If you use as a salad dressing, scoop out what you need for your salad and add a splash of olive oil and a tad of vinegar and mix well until it is a good dressing consistency.

 Marinated Asian Tofu

  • 1 lb. firm tofu
  • ½ c. mirin*
  • 3 T. soy sauce
  • 2 T. rice wine vinegar
  • 1 T. sesame oil
  • 2 t. Asian chile sauce
  • 1” chunk of ginger, chopped coarsely
  • 2 cloves garlic smashed

Take tofu block and slice horizontally so that you have 2 pieces half as thick as your original block. Place on about 4 paper towels, and put another 4 paper towels on top. Then weight it with a cutting board with some cans on top or something like that.  Let it press for at least a half hour.  You can leave it several hours if you are busy. Cut each piece of tofu into 4 pieces. In a large shallow dish such as a Pyrex baker, mix all and marinade ingredients.  Put tofu pieces in marinade. Let sit 30 minutes and then turn over and let sit for another 30 minutes. 

Pre-heat oven to 400F. Put tofu on a baking sheet and bake 30 minutes on one side. Turn over and bake another 10-15 minutes. If you want them more brown, broil at end. (You can make a double recipe and freeze what you don’t want to use within a week; the marinade can be used twice when making a double recipe and three times if you make single recipes. Just pour it into a jar to save it in the refrigerator).

*If you don’t have mirin, you can use rice wine vinegar.

Tofu, Brown Rice, Tahini Salad

  • ½ tomato chopped
  • 1/3 bag of lettuce (butter leaf or Romaine –don’t use those little dark greens, too bitter)
  • 1 small grated carrot
  • ½ c. cooked short grain brown rice
  • Sprouts
  • ½ chopped avocado
  • ½ lb. chopped marinated tofu

Chop lettuce so pieces are a bit smaller. Mix everything in a bowl and toss with 2 parts tahini dressing to 1 part green tomatillo salsa to taste. Season with black pepper. You can just use the tahini dressing, but the salsa gives it some zing and cuts down on the fat.

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