Spice-Roasted Tofu with Cilantro Pesto

Well that was a bit of a hiatus. I kept meaning to post but I just haven’t been in the mood to blog lately, for some reason it seemed so easy during mofo but now I feel like I’m at a loss for words. Strange how that happens. It’s not like I haven’t been doing anything, I’ve actually been kind of busy. We had our first Calgary Vegan Brunch get together, which I will be blogging about soon, xmas shopping, house renos, xmas dress shopping and baking, baking and more baking. It’s funny how things change over time, I used to adore shopping for dresses, now I just find it tedious and frustrating, 2 malls and 8 stores later and I still can’t make up my mind, bah! Now that the holidays are coming up, things are already getting hectic. Yeah, I know that I’ve still got almost a month and no, me and P are not the type of people who put up decorations in October (one holiday at a time please!), but the fact that most of my gifts have to be sent halfway across the country means that I’ve got to get an early start on shopping. So while most of you Americans were feasting on delicious seitan roasts, mashed potatoes, green bean casseroles and various stuffings, I was working up an appetite by working my way through the crowds at a local Christmas market, I did manage to find a few presents (and a few things for myself, he he) and when I got home I got to have my own little feast.

It doesn’t quite compare to the amazing thanksgiving mealsI’ve seen all over the blogosphere but it was one damn good meal. Spice-roasted tofu with cilantro pesto, miso glazed  Brussels sprouts and apple cranberry rice, mmm mmm. The tofu was delicious! You let it sit in a Cajun spiced marinade overnight and then bake them till they’re slightly crispy, then the best part is that they’re smothered in a cilantro/basil pesto. I was a little iffy when making this as the flavours didn’t seem like that would pair well, but surprisingly they do! The tofu fillets taste great without the pesto as well, but if you have access to some fresh basil, give the pesto a shot, it’s totally worth it.

I have this weird irk about having too many recipes in one post and I’ve got some episodes for Dexter to catch up on, so I’ll do up a separate post for the brussels sprouts and rice tomorrow. Until then, I hope you enjoy these tofu fillets, just thinking about them is making me hungry again, and I just stuffed my mouth with cookies! So yeah, they’re good.

Spice-Roasted Tofu with Cilantro Pesto
Makes 6 Servings
Adapted from Vegetarian Times 

Tofu Ingredients:

  • 2 (350g) packages extra-firm tofu, drained and cut into 3 slabs each lengthwise, then each slab cut diagonally into triangles
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 3 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 4 tablespoons GF tamari or low-sodium soy sauce
  • 4 teaspoons toasted sesame oil

Pesto Ingredients:

  • 6 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves
  • 2 cups loosely packed cilantro leaves
  • 4 whole green onions, chopped (1/2 cup)
  • 1 cup almonds
  • 1 teaspoon miso
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons peeled and chopped fresh ginger
  • 4 small cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon wasabi powder (optional)
  • 1/8 teaspoon white pepper


To make the tofu fillets place the tofu slabs in large shallow dish. Whisk together olive oil, spices, broth, tamari and sesame oil. Pour over tofu slabs and chill 1 hour, or overnight, flipping half way in between.

Preheat oven to 400°F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper and arrange tofu slabs on prepared baking sheet. Bake tofu for 12 minutes, flip and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until tofu begins to brown. Remove from oven and prepare pesto.

To make the pesto purée all the ingredients with 1/4 cup water in food processor or blender until smooth. If mixture is too thick slowly add in up to an extra 1/4 cup of water, until desired consistency is reached. Plate two triangles of tofu and top with pesto. Serve warm.

10 thoughts on “Spice-Roasted Tofu with Cilantro Pesto

  1. Susan says:

    That looks lovely, I love new flavourings for tofu.
    I also have come to loathe dress shopping. I used to love it, but this year looking for a dress for my 30th birthday nearly broke me. How times change!

  2. Mandee says:

    I know exactly how you feel, the same thing happened to me after last year’s MoFo and it’s happening again, I don’t feel like blogging :/

    But, I am happy you’re back because that pesto looks fantastic and I want to make it and then cover everything I eat in it!

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