April 20, 2023

Three Things Thursday: Food!

It seems like over the last few weeks, I've said on multiple occasions, "This is the best thing I've ever eaten!"  I'm not sure if it was just because I was very hungry when I ate them or what, but I figured I would write about three of them before I discover even more recipes that are "the best" thing I've ever eaten.

None of the three that I'm going to write about were actually never-before-tried recipes--I've made them before. But for some reason, they were just so good recently that I called them the best. It's hard to narrow it down to three favorite recipes! So these will be three of the recent things I've made that I consider the best...

1) Sweet Korean Lentils

I never, ever would have guessed that I would love these lentils so much! I found this recipe in a cookbook I have from Sam Turnbull at It Doesn't Taste Like Chicken. Her recipes are usually hit or miss for me--not much middle ground. But these lentils are SO good and perfect when I need to come up with something quick and easy to make--without a bunch of ingredients I don't happen to have on hand. When I have green onions, I add those as well.

I'm glad this recipe is also online, so that I can share the link here. I probably never would have tried this recipe if a reader hadn't suggested it (I cannot, for the life of me, remember who it was--but thank you!). This is made with red lentils which are softer and cook faster than brown lentils. I like the texture of them better, too. We eat this over brown basmati rice; if I have rice already cooked in the fridge, dinner can be ready in 15 minutes!

2) Tofu (or Chickpea) Tikka Masala

I don't have a picture of the tofu version I made, but it's the same as this chickpea version--only with tofu instead of chickpeas.

I had never heard of Tikka Masala until about five years ago when I tried this Chickpea Tikka Masala recipe from The Iron You--and I was immediately in love. I had never tried Indian food and when I made it, I was skeptical--I had never even tried garam masala before. (When I was growing up, we never really ate ethnic food.)

I really loved the chickpea version but a couple of weeks ago, I saw that we only had one can of chickpeas (it calls for three) and I decided to try to swap tofu instead. I pressed the tofu well so that it would soak up a lot of the sauce. I used one and a half blocks of tofu, but I think using just one would work out well, too. When you add the coconut milk, it looks VERY thin, but after adding the small amount of cornstarch slurry it's the perfect texture.

To make it with tofu, I followed the recipe as written, but instead of adding the chickpeas, I skipped over them. I cut the tofu into bite size pieces and added them to the sauce, stirring in gently so they didn't break apart, then let them cook over low heat in the sauce for about 15 minutes before adding the cornstarch. (I added about 1/4 cup of water with the tofu because the tofu made the mixture thicker than when using chickpeas.) I cannot even describe how good this is! It makes a very large amount (probably six servings) and the leftovers are just as good. We ate this with brown basmati rice.

3) Firecracker Tofu

I am absolutely sure this is one of the highest-calorie recipes I've ever made, but it's kind of a pain to make--so I won't be making it often. It is absolutely 100% worth making once in a while, though! If you like the fast food-type takeout (like Panda Express), you will love this. It definitely hits that craving for junk food takeout.

I actually posted a review of this on my blog, which you can find here. Reading it over just now, I saw that I didn't love it the first time as much as I currently do--I'm not sure if that was because I had only recently started eating tofu at the time or what, but in the recipe that I typed out, I wrote "adapted from" Vegan Travel Eats--so I probably made a few small changes to reflect what I wanted after trying it as-written. Unfortunately, the site that I got this recipe from is no longer online, so I will share the one I typed out here.

The only change I made most recently (which is reflected in the one I typed) was that I used maple syrup instead of brown sugar (my attempt at making it *slightly* healthier). I also tossed all of the tofu at once in the cornstarch, then added the soy milk + vegan mayo mixture and gently stirred (to batter the tofu pieces) before frying. The original recipe said to do one piece at a time, but that wasn't necessary.

I absolutely recommend using parchment paper when baking this because the sauce gets VERY sticky (which is part of what makes it so good!). It's not ridiculously spicy, so if you like things to be on the spicy side, you may want to add more red pepper flakes. Serve it over rice--I've been loving brown basmati for everything lately.


  1. Those lentils are A M A Z I N G! Thanks so much for the recipe. My 18 year old that doesn't like veggies has just stopped eating meat :-( He loved loved this recipe

  2. I really hope you'll share the sauce recipes. I eat a lot of rice & bean recipes.


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