the quest for new ways to use my grill never ends. i like to roast peppers on it, cook sauce on it, and now i also like to stir fry on it- or essentially pre-cook my veggies and then sauce them with asian inspired flavors post-grill. either way, it keeps me out of a stuffy kitchen and lets me take in the beautiful weather after a long day in the salon. i have tons of thai basil growing in my garden, and i whipped up a thai-inspired pesto that i used to blanket crunchy squares of grilled tofu, and crisp vegetables from the farmers market.
Thai Basil Pesto
makes about 1 1/4 cups
2 cups packed Thai Basil
1 clove garlic, on the big side
1 tbs gluten free soy sauce
1 tsp chili paste, like sambal olek
2 tbs toasted sesame oil
black sesame seeds
combine the basil, shallot, and garlic in a food processor. pulse until coarsely chopped. add the soy, chili paste, and sesame oil and turn the machine on. stream in enough canola oil to make a saucy paste. saucy paste?! i have no other way to describe it. it wont be smooth and saucy and heavy on the oil, but it wont be dry either. transfer to a bowl and fold in 2 tbs black sesame seeds. use asap.
my hubby makes a killer spicy sauce for green beans. one day i’ll shake it out of him so that we can all benefit from its presence in our lives.
p.s. for the best grilled tofu you need to first asses what kind you have before you; it it super water logged, even for extra firm- like naysoya? you’d know because when you make tofu scramble it shrinks considerably in the pan. or, maybe you have the giant bricks of wildwood exta firm tofu, that could double as a door stop it’s so dense?
if you have the former, it’s best to freeze it until solid, followed by thawing, and finally pressing the daylights out of it. all it’ll need is a light mist of cooking spray before getting slapped on the grill. i never marinate tofu because i enjoy it’s flavor, and the freezing method renders it way too absorbent to be marinated.
if you have the latter, just slice and grill! if you try to flip it too soon it’ll tear, but give it a solid 5 minutes and it will release. oh, still give it a light mist of cooking spray first.