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Tofu Stuffing Casserole

What you need: 

1 1/4 cup soy sauce
1 cup water
1/4 cup sesame oil (or 1/3 cup "sesame oil blend")
1 Tablespoon cider vinegar (or lime juice)
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
1 block firm or extra firm tofu
1/2 red bell pepper plus 1/4 green bell pepper, cut into thin strips
1 medium-sized carrot, julienned
1 stalk celery, diced
1 small onion, diced
1/2 teaspoon rosemary
1 box stove top stuffing (or if you prefer to make your own - 2 cups)
fresh ground pepper, to taste

What you do: 

THE MARINADE
1. Preheat oven to 425° F.
2. Combine first 6 ingredients in a bowl and whisk until oil does not separate.
3. Cut tofu into quarters and then cut each quarter in half (the other way), so you end up with 8 thinner strips.
4. Lay tofu in a small casserole dish and pour in marinade mixture. The tofu should be completely immersed in the liquid.
5. Bake uncovered for 15 minutes. Turn the tofu pieces over and bake for another 10 minutes.
6. Remove from oven and let cool.
MEANWHILE...
1. Prepare stuffing as directed on box and set aside.
2. Sauté the onion in a little bit of vegetable oil on med-low heat until tender. Add the rosemary and cook until fragrant. Set aside.
3. Make sure the tofu has cooled enough to handle and then proceed with the following steps.
4. In a medium-sized bowl, crumble each piece of tofu in your hands. It should resemble feta cheese. If you find that there is an excess amount of liquid in the tofu, then squeeze each piece over the sink to secrete the juices.
5. Once the tofu has been crumbled, strain the marinade to catch the garlic and ginger (saving about 1/4 cup of the marinade).
6. Add the garlic, ginger and 1/4 c. marinade to the tofu.
7. Add the sautéed onion and ground pepper and mix well.
CONSTRUCTING THE CASSEROLE...
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. In a small casserole dish, evenly distribute the tofu mixture, pressing down firmly.
3. Add the peppers, carrots and celery (saving a bit for garnish, if you wish).
4. Add the stuffing for the top layer and distribute evenly. Do not press down.
5. Garnish the top with the remaining veggies and a little more ground pepper.
6. Cover with aluminum foil. Poke a couple of holes in the foil to let the steam escape.
7. Bake for approximately 1 hour. Remove foil and bake uncovered for another 10-12 minutes- just long enough so the top crisps up a bit. The veggies on top should be tender, but not mushy.
8. Serve with gravy.
This dish makes an excellent vegan meal for Thanksgiving dinner and goes great with mashed potatoes and gravy!

Preparation Time: 
Approx. 1 hour 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 
Servings: 
5
Recipe Category: 

SO HOW'D IT GO?

One thing I forgot to mention about this recipe was to use NATURALLY FERMENTED SOY SAUCE- not SOYA sauce. Otherwise, you'll end up with an extremely salty (and less delicious) casserole!  :-\

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