Royal Tofu and Cashews | Dinner

Tofu is tossed in spices and cornstarch and baked, then added to a

luscious onion nut sauce. Whole spices and saffron in the sauce make this a

regal dish. This recipe and most others taste best the next day. For recipes like these with a long list of spices, keep the spices at hand in order of use for ease during cooking. Serve this with naan, other flatbreads, or cumin-scented rice. Make this soyfree with chickpea tofu or use vegetables or beans and add directly to the sauce.

This dish can be made free of refined oils.



14 ounces firm or extra-firm tofu, drained

1 teaspoon Garam Masala

1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (optional)

1 to 2 tablespoons cornstarch or arrowroot


1 1/2 cups chopped white or red onion

1 green chile, chopped

4 cloves garlic

1 (1-inch) knob of ginger, chopped into 4 pieces

1/2 cup raw cashews, divided

2 tablespoons almonds

2 tablespoons watermelon seeds or pumpkin or sunflower seeds

2 cups of water

2 bay leaves

1 (2-inch) cinnamon stick

3 cloves

1/4 teaspoon caraway seeds or cumin seeds

1 black cardamom pod (optional)

1/2 teaspoon Garam Masala (here)

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1/4 teaspoon turmeric

1/4 teaspoon cayenne

6 large strands of saffron

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sugar

2 tablespoons chopped cilantro, for garnish


1. Tofu: Cut the tofu into 4 to 6 thick slices. Place the slices between paper

towels or in a kitchen towel. Press to remove as much water as possible. Mix

garam masala, turmeric, salt and garlic in a bowl. Lightly rub the mixture on the

tofu slices. Cut the slices into 3/4-to 1-inch cubes. Add cornstarch and toss to

coat. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Place the tofu on parchment-lined sheet. Bake

for 20 to 25 minutes and set aside. Bake longer for crisper tofu.

2. Sauce: Combine the onion, chile, garlic, ginger, 1/4 cup cashews, almonds,

seeds, and water in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and cook

partially covered until the onions get soft, 11 to 13 minutes.

3. Cool slightly, and transfer the onion mixture to a blender. Blend until smooth

and set aside.

4. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. When the skillet it hot, add bay leaves,

cinnamon, cloves, caraway seeds, and cardamom, if using. Dry roast the spices,

until the bay leaves change colour, 1 minute.

5. Add the blended onion puree, 1/4 cup cashews, garam masala, coriander,

turmeric, cayenne, saffron, lemon juice, salt, and sugar to the skillet. Cook until

the mixture comes to a boil and thickens slightly 10 minutes.

6. Add the baked tofu to the skillet. Mix to coat. Taste and adjust the salt and

spices, if needed. Add some almond milk if the sauce is too thick. Cook for 2

minutes to heat the tofu. Garnish with cilantro (not optional). Discard bay leaves

and cinnamon stick just before serving.

To make with oil: Cook the whole spices in 1 teaspoon oil at Step 4.

To make lower-fat: Omit the cashews from the onion sauce. Use peas instead of

the 1/4 cup cashews at step 5.

Variation: Add pressed and cubed tofu or cooked chickpeas or blanched chunky

vegetables at Step 6. Add 1/4 cup almond milk. Cover and cook for 10 to 15

minutes. Garnish and serve.

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