Easy Lemon Dill Tofu

145 comments

IMG 8175   Easy Lemon Dill Tofu

I really can’t believe that I went all these years without tofu in my life.

I was under the impression that tofu gave me horrible stomach pains whenever I ate it, so that was the main reason for avoiding it. I recently discovered it doesn’t seem to bother my stomach like I thought. When you have IBS, it can be extremely difficult to pinpoint which stomach issues are food related and which are anxiety/stress related.

I left you guys hanging after my first visit with the Naturopath, but there wasn’t a lot to report. I only went for two visits. The doctor went over my medical history and food intake and also did allergy testing. When I showed him my food diary, he took one look at it and guessed that all the tannins in the green tea I was drinking (often 2 huge strong pots a day…!) were probably irritating my stomach lining. My allergy tests came back negative thankfully. The other piece of the puzzle would be to manage my IBS by continuing to work on my anxiety.

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I thought he was insane for suggesting that my green tea could be a problem for my stomach, but I figured it was worth a shot. I reduced my green tea consumption to just 0-1 cup a day to see if it made a difference. Wouldn’t you know it, my stomach pains reduced by about 50% almost immediately. I’m sure there was also a little placebo effect going on, but after reading up on tannins and stomach issues, I do believe there is truth to it. I have a cup in the morning, but I don’t overdo it anymore. I’ve brought back the water in my life, which was needed. Something so simple, made such a huge difference in how I feel.

But, back to the tofu.

I’ll admit, I was also scared of tofu…a lot. First impressions are everything and the big white hunk floating in murky water just didn’t scream “eat me”. I had to figure out what the heck to do with it first.

One of my favourite ways to prepare tofu is just a simple pan fry. After pressing the tofu for about 25 minutes to drain out the water (this results in a firmer tofu), I preheat a large skillet with 1 tsp of cooking oil and then chop the tofu into small squares. Then I cook the tofu for about 6 minutes on high heat, flip, and cook for another 6-8 minutes or so, reducing the heat if necessary. This method results in golden tofu with a nice crispy exterior.

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Sometimes, all I do is add a bit of ketchup and enjoy it as is or I marinate it first with a bit of apple cider vinegar & tamari.

My other favourite way is to turn it into Crispy Tofu Strips! You must try these if you haven’t. Eric said he would happily give up regular chicken strips for these bad boys.

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Other times, I like to get creative with sauces…like this incredible lemon dill sauce. If you adore my lightened up lemon tahini sauce…and the lemon dill spin-off…you’ll love this super lightened up version. It packs in 3/4 cup of fresh dill and has just a touch of tahini and oil in it. While the tofu is cooking, just whip the dressing up in processor and you’re good to go.

Do I even have to tell you that I used my mini processor again? Gah, I love that thing.

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Maybe you’d like a gigantic tripod leg with your tofu, perhaps?

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Sometimes a close up shot is all you need. That’s what I told myself anyways.

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Easy Lemon Dill Tofu

White, wintery looking tofu is now dressed up in greens for the spring. 

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Yield: 1-2 servings

for the tofu:

  • 1 package extra-firm non-gmo tofu, drained, rinsed, and pressed
  • 1 tsp cooking oil (I like to use safflower oil as it has a high smoke point)

 

for the dressing:

  • 1 garlic clove
  • 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp tahini
  • 1 tbsp dill pickle juice (or water)
  • 1/2 tbsp nutritional yeast (optional)
  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 cup fresh dill weed, large stems removed & roughly chopped
  • Kosher salt and pepper, to taste

 

1. Rinse and press the tofu (see here for a how-to) for about 25 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, prepare the lemon dill dressing in a processor. My mini processor worked well for this (just call me a broken record).

3. Preheat a large skillet over high heat and add a teaspoon of oil. Meanwhile, chop up the tofu into small, thin squares.

4. When the skillet is HOT (the tofu should sizzle when placed on it), add the tofu (being careful not to let the pieces touch too much or they will stick) and cook on high heat for 6 minutes or so, flip, and cook for another 6-8 minutes, reducing heat if necessary to avoid burning.

5. When tofu is golden brown on each side, remove from heat. Pour dressing into a medium-sized bowl and add the cooked tofu and stir well until coated. Serve immediately on its own, in a wrap, on a salad, or over grains and vegetables.

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I’m in love with this lemon dill dressing. Who knew you could pack in 3/4 cup of greens into a dressing?

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The clean up was also minimal.

But first, I devoured this tofu.

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Feel free to enjoy this in a wrap, on a salad, over a bed of grains and vegetables, or on its own like I did. Maybe next time I’ll have a bit more restraint to prepare a full meal with it…

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{ 145 comments… read them below or add one }

Beckie Sommerville March 14, 2012

I have yet to try tofu on my new healthy eating plan. I have a question though…..Isn’t tofu a GMO product being that it is made of soy? I have been going out of my way to avoid all GMO’s which is not an easy task. Just wondering your thoughts. I recently read an article by a Botany Professor from Purdue that discusses how GMO food actually kills our healthy intestinal flora.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) March 14, 2012

I buy non-gmo organic tofu.

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Angela March 14, 2012

oops and I meant to say that yes GMO’s are in soooo much! It’s scary. First learned about them when watching Food Inc.

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Rachael @ FreshlyMinted March 14, 2012

I’m slowly working more tofu in our routine – Thank goodness for your crispy strips recipe, or I never would have sold my husband on the idea :)

Love those springy colors, too!

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Melanie Landman March 14, 2012

I love tofu and that recipe looks great. Interesting about your green tea problems. I do sometimes drink it but never on an empty stomach as it makes me feel ill. Black tea doesn’t have the same effect. Mxxx

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Willow March 14, 2012

Yum! That dressing sounds great! I, too, love to crisp tofu in a skillet and eat it very simply, but this looks just as tasty. I don’t eat it often, but I may have to give your dressing a try when I do. :D

And how strange, that tea was causing such problems! Wha’, little ol’ tea? I was just thinking that I don’t drink *enough* tea every day, but I guess I should be careful not to go overboard.
Glad you’re feeling better, anyway!

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Carolina March 14, 2012

Hey Angela,
Why don’t you try stopping drinking green tea altogether? Since you have cut your consumption of it by half, and your stomach pains have reduced by half….I would think that if you cut it out 100%, so will your stomach pains be cut out? There are lots of different teas that you can try, to replace it. And most of them taste better than green tea! :) ( I think so anyway)

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Angela March 14, 2012

I’d say I cut my consumption by about 85% or so cuz I was drinking at least 8 cups of strong green tea a day. Some days I go without it and some mornings I have a cup…I haven’t noticed any pains with 1 weaker cup of green tea. I also love herbal tea now and often drink that sometimes too. Lots of water though!

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Kaila @healthyhelperblog! March 14, 2012

I always use lemon and dill together as a seasoning for fish…but I am sure it is delicious on Tofu!! Can’t wait to try this out!

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Heather @ Get Healthy with Heather March 14, 2012

Lemon dill is such a refreshing flavor combo! Beautiful dish Angela :)

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Deirdre March 14, 2012

The recipe looks so fresh and vibrant. I hope your stomach issues improve!

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Jenny March 14, 2012

Lemon and dill are a match made in heaven.

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ellbeecee March 14, 2012

My favorite tofu used to begin with pan frying, but it’s become this: http://lowcarbdiets.about.com/od/maindishes/r/bakedtofu.htm – with variations to the marinade depending on what I have/what I feel like. Lately it’s been an orange-garlic-ginger based marinade. The texture change with the slow baking in this recipe is awesome. It feels heartier, and as a non-vegetarian, it works well for me.

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Liz @ Tip Top Shape March 14, 2012

This looks fantastic!! I love tofu! I’m eating some now, actually :D

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Sarah March 14, 2012

I’ve had the same reaction to coffee… which doesn’t have any tannins, but it is an irritant. Any more than two cups (about 16 oz) a day and it is not a good time.

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Tiff @ Love Sweat and Beers March 14, 2012

I know what you mean about the IBS. Right now I think I can’t handle tempeh, but I’m not 100% sure on that.

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Angela March 14, 2012

It messes with your mind right?

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Anastasia@healthymamainfo.com March 14, 2012

I looove dill, but never thought about adding it to tofu… Thanks for a brilliant idea!

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Ellie March 14, 2012

OKAY so THIS tofu recipe looks great. I too have IBS and have been avoinding tofu- (also because i’ve been slightly intimidated by the preperation)… I’ll have to try this though! I know that tempeh definitely irritates my stomach, but I’m still not too sure about tofu! Going to do a little test!
Thanks for the post!

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Aylin @ Glow Kitchen March 14, 2012

I’ve never paired dill with tofu. Looks so fragrant and refreshing!

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K March 14, 2012

Crispy tofu looks great!! Tofu is a nice occasional treat. Too processed for it to be part of my regular diet- ick!

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Jacqueline@digintobooks March 14, 2012

My mouth is watering this looks SO good! I LOVE tofu in any form and this pile of it on a plate looks like the perfect dinner to me! Love the recipe! Thanks! :)

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Lauren@LittleYellowkitchen March 14, 2012

This is my dinner tonight – atop quinoa! It looks absolutely amazinggg.

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Suzanne H March 14, 2012

I used to have IBS, but I’ve managed to get rid of it even though my anxiety’s still around. It took going grain, dairy, and legume free (eating a strict Paleo diet). I eat meat though, so I don’t know how you’d manage that on a vegan diet.

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AG (Our Lighter Footsteps) March 14, 2012

Your lemon dill sauce reminds me of one that I used to put on salmon…when I had salmon that is :) Of course, yours is so much healthier! I am going to try it on a salad, I think :)

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Lauren @ What Lauren Likes March 14, 2012

this looks fantastic! Love the green colour for spring :)

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Brittney March 14, 2012

I’m not a huge fan of tofu but you make it look so delicious!

For your IBS, have you tried drinking decaffeinated teas instead of green tea? I am a Dietetic Tech Intern and would be glad to help you with any questions you may have. Are you drinking 6-8 cups of water per day as well as consuming enough fiber? Try to slowly increase fiber to 25 g to 35 g per day as tolerated.

I hope you feel better! Let me know if I can answer any diet questions you may have.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) March 14, 2012

I’m drinking a bit of herbal tea but mostly water and sometimes lemon water. I def get tons of fibre!

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Erica March 14, 2012

Tofu newbie….how does one press tofu? *blushes*

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Angela (Oh She Glows) March 14, 2012

Don’t worry I didnt know either…I linked to it in a previous post (in the recipe)

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Julia March 14, 2012

Oh wow, this sounds wonderful! I’ve been loving tofu lately but need new ways to try it.

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Miriam March 14, 2012

Ok Ange. That’s it. I’m trying tofu. You just make it so convincing :)

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Moni'sMeals March 14, 2012

This certainly makes tofu look like the better choice out of anything else! Dill and Lemon are two of my fav combos. I love that you added the nutritional yeast.

Glad you have been feeling better too. :)

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Lana March 14, 2012

So delicious! I love tofu, and am always looking for ways to dress it up a bit. We fried some up the other day with ginger and lime and added strips into some homemade sushi with minimal brown rice and tons of veggies :)
Out of curiosity though, what is your stand on soy and tofu? Good for us, bad for us? I eat it in moderation because I feel that soy isn’t the healthiest out there, but I just love tofu too much so I buy organic GMO free tofu once in a while. Would love to know what you guys think :)
Love all your recipes girl!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) March 14, 2012

Hey Lana, As far as I’ve read, research is on both sides when it comes to soy. I prefer to enjoy it in moderation (yes organic non-gmo) about once a week. If I was eating it several times a week, I might be more concerned.

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Laura March 14, 2012

I’m a lurker… But have to comment. First – I simply ADORE your winter banner! That is just the most luscious fruit/veggie picture ever! Second – hubby & I just started the tofu thing ourselves. He did an awesome job frying it up with yeast flakes and some Italian seasoning. It did not survive the trip to the table. Gone. Yumm. In theory however, it would have been super yummy with sauteed tuscan kale, and mushrooms on top of rice… :-) he made extra to last the week – but that too didn’t last the day… amazing. however – i’m pretty sure we use much more oil than your recipe calls for… still – great!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) March 14, 2012

Thanks Laura! glad to hear you’re enjoying the tofu too :)

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Susan March 14, 2012

I LOVE dill – can’t wait for summer when my garden is overgrown with dill and I can use it to make this!
I too have a mini chopper which I love and use quite often – so handy and convenient. I also have an immersion blender which I find quite useful for blending dressings such as your lemon tahini dressing

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Jena March 14, 2012

You totally beat me to posting this recipe! I’ve been doing a very similar sauce (sans nutritional yeast) for a few weeks on cold chickpeas. It’s great on salad or by itself. I never thought of using it on tofu – will have to try it!

Thanks Angela!

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Crystal March 14, 2012

This sauce would be awesome on chickpeas! Doing that next!

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Raegan March 14, 2012

Just discovered your blog… And I just want to say that I’m so glad I did! I thought I was crazy for thinking green tea hurt my stomach because of how good for you it’s supposed to be. I’m slowly learning that when you have IBS, sometimes the “best” foods are the most painful.

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Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin March 14, 2012

I’m glad your tummy troubles have been solved! That’s so weird that it was the green tea though – I’ve never heard of it causing problems before! But then again, I’ve never heard of someone drinking 2 pots of it a day either haha. ;)

This tofu recipe looks fantastic!

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Lindsay @ The Reluctant Runner March 14, 2012

I can’t drink green tea at all, which is sad because I love how it tastes! I cant drink too much of any tea (and by too much I really mean cup after cup–I tend to get a little nuts in the winter and always have to reel myself in) but even a little bit of green tea really messes my stomach up. I’m glad I’m not the only one, I have never heard of anyone else whose stomach can’t handle it!

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Stacy March 14, 2012

This is one recipe I am definitely goijng to try… Planning to do so this weekend. :-)

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Crystal March 14, 2012

On my way home, I stopped and picked up the ingredients for this recipe. I was blown away with the taste! Awesome! I loved this recipe and had to hold myself back from eating the entire block. I can’t wait for leftovers tomorrow!!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) March 15, 2012

Im happy you enjoyed it!

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Bethany March 14, 2012

I am an IBS sufferer, too. I switched off of coffee to tea because coffee KILLED my stomach. But that’s an interesting observation about green tea. I didn’t feel good the other day after drinking it. Hmm. It usually doesn’t bother me too much. But I should keep an eye on it.

My triggers are grease, certain vegetables (broccoli can be the worse sometimes!) and anything acidic like orange juice and tomato sauce.

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Meghan March 14, 2012

This sounds great! I also have IBS. It is very difficult to regulate and sometimes you think one food causes it when in fact it’s something else completely! I must say, since going vegan, it has been much easier to manage. Green tea is definitely a killer. Fennel, ginger, and peppermint are great teas for IBS. I love lemon ginger as a morning pick me up and a calm cup of fennel at night. Your recipes have been great for my sensitive stomach which has been so amazing. So thank you thank you thank you! Can’t wait to make this one!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) March 15, 2012

I’ve been rocking the lemon ginger and peppermint too :) Love them!

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Sarah @ The Healthy Diva March 14, 2012

Lemon and dill is a classic combo that suits so many different proteins. I know what I’m making next time my vego friend comes over to visit!

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Taji March 14, 2012

My acupuncturist told me to avoid green tea since i was having gastritis problems. He’s getting me off Prilosec so i am listening to him. I’m glad it is helping you.

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