Why this recipe works: For a satisfying, flavorful vegetarian Asian-inspired noodle dish, we liven up mild-mannered tofu and noodles with a sesame-based sauce made with tahini, seasoned rice vinegar, and oyster sauce, plus a little heat from ginger and spicy Asian chili-garlic sauce. Draining excess moisture from the tofu helps it crisp up in the skillet and gives it texture, and the draining and sautéing can all happen while the noodles are cooking in a separate pot. We combine our sauce, noodles, and tofu in the skillet, and we add some scallions for brightness. Topping it all off with toasted and chopped cashews lends some richness as well as texture.
14 ounces extra-firm tofu, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
1/4 cup tahini
3 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
1 tablespoon Asian chili-garlic sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 pound fresh Chinese noodles or 12 ounces dried linguine
Salt and pepper
4 scallions, sliced thin
1/2 cup raw cashews, toasted and chopped
- Spread tofu out in single layer on several layers of paper towels and let drain for 10 minutes. Bring 4 quarts water to boil in large pot.
- Whisk tahini, vinegar, oyster sauce, chili-garlic sauce, soy sauce, and ginger in bowl.
- Heat oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over high heat until shimmering. Add tofu and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned and crisp, 8 to 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, add noodles and 1 tablespoon salt to boiling water and cook, stirring often, until al dente. Reserve 1 1/2 cups cooking water, then drain noodles and return them to pot. Whisk tahini mixture to recombine. Add tahini mixture, tofu, half of scallions, and 3/4 cup cooking water and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste and add remaining cooking water as needed to adjust consistency. Serve immediately topped with cashews and remaining scallions.
- Main Dishes, Tofu
- Other Asian