Battle of the Breakfast Tacos

In one corner, we have the “Diner Breakfast Tacos” from Eat Like You Give a Damn by Michelle Schwegmann and Josh Hooten; and in the other corner, we have the “Supreme Bacon, Scramble and Cheese Tacos” from The Taco Cleanse by Wes Allison, Stephanie Bogdanich, Molly R. Frisinger and Jessica Morris.  Who will be named the champ?  Let’s find out…

The Diner Breakfast Tacos come out swinging with a delicious single-pan taco filling concoction comprised of potatoes, onion, vegan sausage, tofu, spinach and spices.  It comes together beautifully.  Quite swoon-worthy.

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But the secret weapon of this taco is baking the tortillas with some cheese shreds before filling.  Oh yeah, that’s what I’m talking about.

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Put these together, and it’s quite a one-two punch.  The recipe calls for adding salsa, sour cream and/or avocado, all of which would be fun but none of which are necessary.  These tacos are delightful as is.

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And what does the Supreme Bacon, Scramble and Cheese Taco have up its sleeve?  While the tacos above are light and nimble on their feet, happy to spar and trade jabs, these Supreme Tacos are big, heavy sluggers.  Three different components come together in a corn tortilla, and it’s quite a feast.  First, there’s tasty tempeh bacon cubes with a perfectly balanced, scrumptious mix of flavors.

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Next comes a deliciously flavored tofu “scramble” that goes heavy on the nutritional yeast (yum!).  The word scramble is in quotes because this is a baked tofu treatment, and while the authors call it a scramble, it’s certainly not a traditional one.  It is, however, wonderful and quite simple to prepare.

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The final filling element for this taco is a cheese sauce.  There are recipes for home-made sauces in the book, and I bet they’re great, but I used the Heidi Ho Organics Creamy Chia Cheeze, which never disappoints and takes two seconds to heat up.

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Put all of that together and you’ve got a knockout punch of taste and texture.

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So who gets the trophy?  I’ve conferred with the judges and it’s… a TIE!  These are both insanely good tacos that will make you happy at any time of day (breakfast tacos for dinner has become quite popular around here).  While they are very different, they are both perfect.  It simply comes down to what you’re in the mood for.

I recommend picking up both books (every recipe I’ve made from both of them has been excellent), but if you google these specific recipes, you’ll find them reprinted in something that seems to be called google books.  I am not familiar with this platform and don’t know if it’s done with author permission, so I’m not linking here, but it’s easily located if you’re so inclined.  But again, BUY THESE BOOKS!

Enjoy!  xo

Seriously Great Tofu Scramble

I love tofu scrambles.  I make a lot of different scrambles with a lot of different vibes and I enjoy them all.  If I had to crown the King of All Scrambles, though, that prize might have to go to this one.  It’s a heavy duty, seriously filling, decadent sort of scramble that feels just right on a lazy, cozy weekend morning.  I came upon it via the Hot Knives guys, and their link provides a full demonstration so I won’t replicate that here.  I will say that the one tweak I made was adding just a smidge of black salt (aka Kala Namak) during the seasoning sessions.  Not vital but mighty nice (and eggy).  And I will also say that the technique of letting the scramble sit for a bit leads to heavenly browned bits, a technique that should be used every time you make a scramble.  Final thought:  you can use this recipe as a base and just add whatever ingredients you are craving at the time.  The sausage definitely makes it a lot heavier, so when you’re not feeling it, just leave it out.  Or put in more veggies.  Or… no rules!

Here’s the link:

http://urbanhonking.com/hotknives/2013/10/22/yachts-tofu-scramble-secrets/

And here’s a quick pic of my scramble in process.  Look at those browned bits!!!

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Yum.  Enjoy!  xo

Thyme for Tofu Scramble

A friend recently gave me some dried thyme from her garden.  When I opened the charming package, it smelled divine, and I wanted to use it in something immediately.  After scanning the ‘fridge and pantry shelves, I decided to make a tofu scramble that would feature the thyme.  It turned out delicious – one of my favorite tofu scrambles ever.  However, since I was completely winging it the first time, I went back and made it again a few days later, jotting down what I was doing this time, to see if I could replicate what I’d done.  Good news:  the second try was just as tasty as the first.

My inspiration:

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Having this great ingredient definitely elevated my dish.  While any thyme you have on hand will work, if you can get your hands on some super delicious, freshly dried stuff like this, it will make a big difference.

The first thing I did was sizzle a bit of garlic in olive oil.  You want to brown it gently, being careful not to burn it.

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Next, add some chopped broccoli to the hot oil, followed by some mushrooms.  (Note:  these veggies are what I had on hand and what I like in a scramble.  Feel free to substitute whatever you prefer.)

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Crumble up some extra firm tofu and add it to your pan.  Now you’re going to season it.  I should warn you that when I’m in “wing it” mode, I’m not measuring exactly.  I’m seasoning to taste, and that’s what you’ll be doing, too, using my suggestions as a jumping off point.  Given that thyme was the starting point of this recipe, I first crumbled a generous amount into the pan.  Next I added a pinch of dried tarragon and a pinch of black salt.  (Quick note:  if you don’t know what black salt is, it’s also known as Kala Namak and can be found at Indian markets.  It has a pungent, sulfuric smell that creates an egg-like sensation in vegan scrambles quite nicely.  A little goes a long way!)  I ground a lot of black pepper into the mix next, followed by a splash of soy sauce, about a tablespoon of nutritional yeast and about a teaspoon of Dijon mustard.  Stir until everything is incorporated and heated through.

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Add salt to taste.  You’re done!

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Enjoy!  xo