Glazed Caribbean tofu with Rice and Peas

Glazed Caribbean tofu with Rice and Peas
Why this recipe works: The combination of coconut milk, rice, and pigeon peas makes a creamy, rich companion for our spicy sweet tofu. Pigeon peas are popular in west Indian cooking, and canned ones which can be found in the canned goods section of most supermarkets are flavorful and easy to use. If you can’t find them, kidney beans or black eyed peas can be substituted. If you want your dish a little spicier, add some of the jalapeno seeds.

Glazed Caribbean Tofu with rice and peas
Ingredients: serve 4
 2 (14 – ounce block firm tofu, cut lengthwise in half, and each plank cut crosswise into 6
4 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 onion diced
2 jalapeƱo chiles, seeded and chopped
1 ½ cups long grain rice
1 (16 ounce) can pigeon peas, drained and rinsed
1 (14 ounce) can coconut milk
1 cup water salt and pepper
¼ cup red pepper jelly
2 tablespoon lime juice
¼ cup jerk spice mix

  1. Lay tofu slices in single layer on several layers of paper towels, cover with several more layers, and top with rimmed baking sheet. Set heavy skillet or dutch oven on baking sheet and let tofu drain for 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoon oil in large saucepan over medium high heat. Ad onion and jalapeno and cook until softened, about 4 minute. Add rice and cook until opaque, about 1 minute. Stir in peas, coconut milk, water, and 1 teaspoon salt. Bring to boil, cover, and cook over low heat until rice is tender, about 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper
  3. In microwave safe bowl, microwave jelly on high power until bubbly, about 1 minute. Whisk in lime juice. Toss tofu with jerk spice mix. Heat remaining oil in large nonstick skillet over medium high heat until just smoking. Add tofu and cook, turning occasionally, until golden, about 8 minutes. Add jelly mixture to skillet and toss to combine. Simmer until jelly has thickened, about 1 minutes. Serve with rice.

Smart shopping Caribbean jerk spice mix
We tried several supermarket brands of jerk spice mix plus our own tasty yet time consuming homemade blend before finding one that adequately accentuated our tofu McCormick Perfect Pinch Caribbean Jerk, with its vibrant blend of black and red pepper herb, and spices, gave us enough spicy flavor and heat to make us pay attention, but not so much as to overshadow the dish

Smart shopping pigeon peas
These African legumes can be found dried, fresh, frozen, and canned in many grocery stores and most Latin American and Indian markets. Usually brownish in color, pigeon peas are about the size of standard garden peas. They are most often dried, split, and cooked like dried beans. 

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