Packaged broccoli slaw is a healthy convenience food. Packed with fiber and vitamins, it can be used instead of cabbage to make a great slaw or tossed into green salads for added crunch. But did you know you can cook it? You can, and it makes the fastest stir-fry you’ve ever had.
Broccoli slaw is simply peeled and shredded broccoli stems combined with a little shredded carrot and sometimes red cabbage. You can make it yourself with a food processor or mandolin, and that’s a great way to use leftover broccoli stems, but peeling and shredding does take a little time. Honestly, I never bother. I save my broccoli stems for other uses and keep a package of organic broccoli slaw in my fridge to add to my daily salads.
Recently, I somehow wound up with two bags. The one bad thing about packaged broccoli slaw is that it goes bad quickly and odoriferously, so to make sure that none went to waste, I used one package as the base for this Ridiculously Easy stir-fry. Because the broccoli stems are so thinly shredded, they cook in about two minutes, allowing me plenty of time to brown a little tofu to make this a filling main dish. It was so tasty that it was an instant hit with my family and, because it was so quick and easy to make, I’ve added it to my short list of “last minute meals” that I can throw together in minutes.
- 14 ounces extra-firm tofu, cut into small cubes
- 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup rice wine (may substitute pale dry sherry, vermouth, white wine or dry cider; for non-alcoholic substitute, try 3 tablespoons apple juice and 1 tablespoon vinegar)
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari
- 1 medium onion
- 1/2 red bell pepper
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 teaspoon minced ginger root
- 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes (or to taste)
- 1 12-ounce package broccoli slaw
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
- additional 1 tablespoon soy sauce or tamari, or to taste
- Combine the tofu, sliced garlic, rice wine, and 2 tablespoons soy sauce in a gallon-sized ziplock bag. Seal bag and turn gently to coat the tofu with the marinade. (You can also do this in a large bowl, carefully stirring the tofu to coat.) Set aside as you chop the vegetables and heat the skillet.
- Begin heating a large, non-stick skillet or wok over medium-high heat (make sure you have a lid for this pan nearby). While the pan is heating, remove the root and stem ends from the onion, cut it in half top to bottom, and cut each half into thin vertical slices. Slice the bell pepper thinly, and mince the garlic and ginger.
- When the pan is hot, drain the tofu, keeping the marinade in a large bowl. Place the tofu in the skillet and cook, turning every minute or so, until it’s beginning to brown on most sides, about 6 minutes. Transfer the tofu to the large bowl with the marinade, stir gently, and cover with a plate.
- Add the onion to the hot pan and cook for about 2 minutes. Add the bell pepper, garlic, ginger, and pepper flakes and cook for another minute. Add the broccoli slaw and two tablespoons of water and cover quickly. Steam for 2-3 minutes or until slaw is slightly tender but still crisp. Add the tofu and marinade to the skillet along with the sesame oil and additional soy sauce, and stir well. Heat for just a minute or two and serve immediately.
I hope you enjoy this quick, easy, and delicious recipe as much as my family did! Stay tuned for more “Weekend Quickies”–ridiculously easy recipes using nutritious packaged foods and natural ingredients.
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