Tofu Stir-Fry Recipe! Or, How To Succeed At Cooking Without Really Trying
We came up with a fantastic recipe last night. I will now share it with you.
Tofu and Whatever Stir Fry
Some red bell pepper
A few carrots
Cashews (whatever you have in the cupboard)
A little peanut oil
A little sesame oil
Copious amounts of internet research
1 tbsp + 2 tsps soy sauce
1 tsp of sesame oil
1 tsp of mirin, or not
Some rice vinegar
A little less than a tsp cornstarch
A little more soy sauce to top it off and get you up to 1/4 cup of sauce-thingy
Rice on the side! Any kind you like, cooked how you like.
OKAY COOKIN' TIME.
1. Realize that recent dinners have been wholly unsatisfactory. This includes but is not limited to earlier "stir fry" which came out too sweet or too saucy, depending on who you ask (not Boo), and the "avocado fries" at Rosepepper which resembled ankylosauruses and tasted like breading. Just breading. Let's not get into the entrees, swear to God.
2. Decide to stop at store to facilitate home-cooking on way home from picking up barely-a-licensed-driver-really girlfriend from work, since she has decided that a declared snow day means "too snowy to drive," and look here, you're off work, SNOW DAY, why don't you drive her, yay!
3. Present plan. Alter plan when girlfriend says, for the 180th time, that you cannot do anything directly on the way home from work because she really has to pee and she didn't pee at work before she left, because the bathrooms are, like, far away and sometimes the guards are sitting around and it is awkward and sort of fraught.
4. Rejigger plan. Home first, then copious amounts of internet research, part un.
5. Make ingredient list while GF goes to the bathroom like a big girl.
6. Stick recalcitrant dog into cage. Wave bye-bye!
7. Go to Turnip Truck.
8. Get yelled at by Turnip Truck patron in parking lot.
9. After perturbment, realize Turnip Truck patron was telling you that Turnip Truck is closed, despite it not yet being 7 PM, wtf.
10. Go to Kroger. Grumble grumble grumble.
11. While procuring necessary groceries, stand for a while at poultry section. Stand for a long while, considering the relatively scant options. Notice that girlfriend has wandered off. Watch girlfriend approach, holding up a random box from the freezer case, saying, "Look! I found Superpretzels! Can we get a pie?"
12. Say FUCK IT to the overpriced and/or unacceptable chicken options Kroger has on display. This will be a tofu night only.
13. Ignore girlfriend raising eyebrow at sudden vegan tendencies.
15. Home. Don't die slipping on ice all over street, sidewalk, stairs to house.
16. Let loose canid from enclosure.
18. Encourage girlfriend to begin chopping vegetables while you go walk the dog.
19. Walk the dog. Come inside.
20. Chop all vegetables.
21. Ignore girlfriend when she says, "Are you done chopping the red peppers? Those look kind of long. I think it's supposed to be chunks, not strips."
22. Encourage girlfriend to make saucy thing in light of recent successes with potsticker dipping sauce construction.
23. Take out sesame oil, sriracha, mirin, soy sauce for girlfriend.
24. Start cooking tofu.
25. RUDELY tell girlfriend she always makes too much sauce, and to keep it under a quarter cup total. When she replies that the problem with the last stir fry was that it was too sweet, not that it was too saucy, respond that in fact it WAS too saucy, and also she always makes too much potsticker dipping sauce. So.
26. Ignore dark looks, under-breath curses from living room (copious internet research, part deux), other side of kitchen.
27. Step on dog.
28. Move lightly cooked tofu to bowl.
29. Begin to saute garlic.
30. Quickly throw garlic onto surface of the stove with the spatula thing because the wok is too hot and the garlic is burning, oh shit oh shit.
31. Okay, no garlic.
32. Begin cooking vegetables.
33. Toss them like a madman until know-it-all-ass girlfriend says, "So, are they cooking at all? I think you can let them sit for a minute, then stir, then sit, then stir, like the dudes at the med school cart, who are like, WAH, stir, put the lid on, okay, do something else, okay, lid up, squirt bottle, stir again, lid again..."
34. Conclude that test-piece of broccoli is cooked to the point of "warm salad."
35. Consider whether girlfriend has a point, despite literal sense of "stir fry" implying constant stirring.
36. Put lid on wok.
37. Make appropriate noises of sympathy when girlfriend pinches finger in misguided attempt to clean as she goes, by putting soy sauce back in sticky lazy susan cabinet.
38. Remove lid, stir vegetables.
39. Make more appropriate noises of sympathy when believed-pinch is actually disgusting cut/crimp thing in girlfriend's finger. Wish she hadn't insisted on you looking at it. Immediately order, "Band-aid, soap and hot water, neosporin." Ignore smart-ass girlfriend who says, "Not in that order, presumably."
40. Marvel, silently, at endless clumsiness of girlfriend who took ballet for YEARS, for Pete's sake.
41. Ignore whimpering noises from sauce-thingy-making girlfriend.
42. Realize that girlfriend cannot be ignored when she cries to the heavens, I CANNOT GET THESE CORNSTARCH LUMPS TO GO AWAY, AAARRRGHHH.
43. Take over sauce-thingy construction.
44. Continue to cook vegetables.
45. When vegetables are quite al dente, throw tofu back in. Have now-relieved-of-duty sauce-thingy-maker throw in cashews. Two handfuls or so. Stir.
46. Drizzle sriracha; stir.
47. Remark that using squeeze bottle on wok makes you feel like a real chef.
48. Ignore eye-rolling from direction of now-relieved-of-duty sauce-thingy maker.
49. Realize, OH MY HELL, I forgot the rice. And now this is almost ready.
50. Decide, FUCK THE RICE, healthiest dinner EVAR! Lots of brightly colored vegetables! No starch! Awesome!
51. Have now-relieved-of-duty sauce-thingy maker taste-test bit of broccoli.
52. Kvell with pride when she pronounces it "delicious. Almost as good as the dudes at the cart."
53. Transfer to bowl.
54. Transfer from bowl to plates.
55. NOM NOM NOM (concurrently: "Law & Order" rerun from 2001. Marvel at detective needing to explain what a Blackberry is to older detective, and what blood diamonds were to everyone. Ask girlfriend when "Blood Diamond" came out. Decide "Gerard" is L&O-code for "DeBeers." Marvel at how relatively uncraggy Sam Waterston was back then. HEY IT'S DANIELS FROM THE WIRE, wow, he's got a nice African accent here, huh? Remember that episode when you saw Daniels with his shirt off and his waist looked like Scarlett O'Hara's and his shoulders and chest looked like He-Man? Wasn't that NUTS?)
56. Come up for air.
That's how we cook. This may be why eating out, despite travel time, is faster.