The holidays are such a magical time. Family and friends laughing, and coming in and out of the house. Celebrations, cozy nights by the fire. And one of the best parts? Amazing food being created and devoured. Sometimes, when you have been in the kitchen day in and day out you want a simple, light, flavorful dish to feed the masses. These little stacks are the perfect light lunch, or dinner appetizer. Wishing you all a warm and beautiful holiday season! xo
14 Ounces of Extra Firm Organic Sprouted Tofu
2 large bunches of bail
14 vine ripened tomatoes
1/4 cup Pomegranate or Fig Balsamic
4 tablespoons olive oil
Juice and Zest of 2 Meyer lemons
Pink salt + Pepper
Optional- Tablespoon of Dijon Mustard
Drain your tofu and wrap in cheese cloth or paper towels .Put on a plate. Place a heavy cast iron pan, or some form of heavy weight on top of the tofu. Allow o drain for at least 30 minutes. While you are waiting slice your tomatoes, mine half of the basil and keep large leaves for layering in the Caprese stacks. Mix your balsamic, olive oil, lemon juice & zest, salt and pepper in a bowl + mustard if using.
Unwrap tofu and place on cutting board. Slice the tofu about 1/4 of an inch slices. Place the slices on a large platter. Once all the slices are in the platter, cover with the balsamic mixture. You want it to be covering every piece, so it soaks deep into the tofu. Allow to marinate for 45 minutes to an hour.
Now you are ready to layer. Tomato on the bottom, sprinkle salt + pepper and then a basil leaf followed by a slice of tofu and another tomato. Another sprinkle of salt + pepper, splash of balsamic and olive oil, and a a bit of the minced basil. Repeat this process until all your ingredients are used. The perfect little bites! Enjoy!!!
For those who do not enjoy Tofu, my favorite Cashew Mozzarella recipe xo
Fresh Mozzarella di Bufala (di cashews)
by Miyoko Schinner
2 cups raw cashews, soaked for several hours in water
½ cup Rejuvelac
pinch of sea salt
½ to ¾ tsp. Xanthan gum
optional: 4 Tbsp. canola or refined coconut oil (for meltability purposes—not needed if using for Caprese salad or otherwise serving cold)
2 Tbs. agar agar flakes
⅔ cup water
In the morning (or the day before)
Drain the cashews and place in a blender with the Rejuvelac and salt. Blend, stopping to push down and scrape as necessary, until absolutely creamy and smooth. Add ½ tsp. of the xanthan gum and reprocess until it thickens and looks gooey. Place in a bowl, cover, and allow to sit at room temperature for 8 to 24 hours, depending on the temperature of your room. Mozzarella has a mild flavor, so be careful not to let it sit out too long lest it develop a tang. You want it to develop some flavor and depth, but still be mild.
In the evening or the next day
Place the cheese back in the blender. Dissolve the agar agar flakes by mixing with the water in a small pot and bringing to a boil; allow to simmer, stirring with a whisk, for several minutes until completely dissolved. Pour the agar agar into the blender and blend until completely incorporated. To achieve a “stretchier” consistency, add an additional ¼ to ½ tsp. xanthan gum.
Forming the Balls
Have ready a bowl filled with a quart or so of cold water and 1 tsp. salt. Immediately after blending, use a small ice cream scoop to form little balls of the soft cheese; drop into the water. They will harden almost instantaneously. Refrigerate for up to one week.
*If you are celiac or wheat-allergic, try replacing the Rejuvelac with a probiotic mix of ¾ tsp. of New Chapter Probiotics dissolved in 1 cup warm water, and use half of that for this recipe. I have a theory that this may produce a more mild sharpness—so I plan to experiment with this change as well.