Thursday, August 29, 2013

Pecan-Crusted Tofu with Turnip Mash

Happy Thursday everyone! I know that summer is still lingering in most regions of the US but here in Washington, we a have a late summer downpour! Granted the little island I live on is in the same growing zone as Hawaii and we are classified as a temperate rainforest.  The rain may be pouring down in buckets (yay! it's great for my garden) but it's warm and steamy and the fogs are croaking just outside my window.  They are so cute I just have to share a quick picture I snapped of these adorable little green tree frogs that are absolutely everywhere on the island!  I guess that's why we have island icons like Frog Rock and dozens of fiber glass frogs painted by local artists on various spots throughout the island.  Well, I didn't paint a frog but I did snap this little guy on the blackberry bush:

Enough about little frogs.  Today's weather has me in the mood for something fresh but still warm so I am making one of my absolute favorite Venturing Vegan recipes: Pecan-Crusted Tofu.  As an avid non-GMO promoter, please make sure your tofu is organic and to certified non-gmo.  Soybeans are one of the top gmo crops so make sure the label is there, organic tofu runs about $1 more than non organic so it's an easy swap.  Almost all stores carry an organic version of tofu so it should be super easy to find.

This dish is a healthy version of comfort food without any sacrifice in flavor!  The tofu really takes center stage here and all of my newly vegan and transitioning clients love this dish!  The tofu has a wonderful texture and the meal feels very complete served with garlic green beans, steamed carrots and turnip mash (you could also serve with mashed potatoes).

Serve this dish anytime of year and plate with whatever local, seasonal produce you have on hand such as roasted squash in fall or wilted greens in winter.

Pecan-Crusted Tofu Ingredients:
1 package organic firm or extra firm tofu
1/4 cup melted vegan butter
1/2 cup honey mustard
1 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
1/2 cup pecans or walnuts, chopped
1/2 cup chives, finely chopped
1 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. sea salt
Lemon wedges to serve

Turnip Mash Ingredients:
2 lbs. turnips
1/2 cup non-flavored vegan milk such as hemp or almond
3 Tbsp. vegan butter
salt and pepper to taste

Drain water from tofu and press excess water out by wrapping tofu in a kitchen towel or paper towel and putting something heavy on top.  I usually use a stock pot with potatoes inside.  This will press the tofu very well.  Pressing tofu allows for a meatier texture once cooked and allows the tofu to absorb all the flavor you add to it.  Press for 10 to 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400°F and grease a shallow baking dish.  In a small bowl, add the vegan butter and honey mustard.  Whisk until well incorporated.  In another small bowl, add the chopped walnuts, chives, panko, salt and pepper.  Mix.

Take your pressed tofu and cut into 4 slices about 3/4" in thickness.  Take each slice and dip in the butter mixture making sure to coat it well.  Then dip it into the panko mixture and press the panko mix into the tofu so that it sticks. Some will crumble off but don't worry about that because most should stick.  If not, you haven't added enough of the butter mixture.  Place each piece of tofu on the baking dish.  Repeat until all pieces of tofu are coated. Place dish in the oven and bake for 12-15 minutes on the middle rack.  Half way through cook time, carefully flip each piece of tofu.

In the meantime, peel and cube the turnips.  Put them in a pot, cover with cold water and bring to boil. Add a pinch of salt and cook for about 10 minutes or until turnips are tender.  Drain turnips and return them to the pot over low heat.  Mash turnips to your desired consistency (I like to leave a few chunks in mine).  Add vegan butter and vegan milk and gently stir in to the turnip mash.  Cover and leave on low heat until ready to serve.  Serve hot.

Remove tofu from oven and let cool for about 2 minutes before plating.  Serve with turnip mash, additional veggies or side salad and lemon wedge.  Enjoy!
Thank you for stopping by the Venturing Vegan blog today and taking time out of your day to read a recipe or two.  Please remember to always buy your tofu responsibly and buy organic. We don't want no gmo in our tofu!  To learn more about genetically modified soybean you can check out this website Nation of Change or you can watch the documentary Genetic Roulette.  If GMO makes you as mad as it makes me, join the movement by getting involved in your local non-gmo
groups, always buy corn/wheat/soy/canola oil organic and do what we did at the turn of century, grow your own!  Freedom gardens go a long way in the movement to fight Monsanto, global warming, and soil destruction.  If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below or shoot me an email at



  1. This looks so amazing! I can't wait to try it.

    1. Thank you! Please let me know how it turns out if you make it!

    2. Most of us vegans don't eat honey :-)