Chinese-inspired Vegan Tofu in Sticky Orange Sauce

My yummy eight-ingredient tofu in sticky orange sauce.

During my university days, I was a total sucker for Chinese dishes. Every time my friends and I wanted to eat out, I was always the first to shout Chinese. Why? I love the simplicity of the cuisine.

You can practically taste every flavour in Chinese cuisine. Nothing is ever too overpowering or ‘fighting’ with something else. I don’t think I know anyone who doesn’t like Chinese food.

I don’t get to go out as often as I did those days, mom life! But, I enjoy trying to create Chinese-inspired dishes at home. The idea for this one comes from the popular duck in orange sauce recipe. I planned to make this with no more than eight ingredients.

I wanted it to taste good, but not too spicy so that I could get my kids to eat it too. You won’t be wrong for thinking that my recipes these days are based mainly on my kids. They are, especially since I’ve given up on cooking multiple dishes at meal times.

Anyhow, I’m happy to tell you that this recipe worked out great! In fact, my son has asked me to cook it again this week.

Whoop!

I chose to serve this tofu sauce with white rice and steamed veggies. Once again, I’ve used white rice because of my children. I eat brown rice myself and offer it to them as often as possible, but they always prefer white rice when it is available.

It is true that brown rice has a slightly superior nutritional profile compared with white rice, but if you struggle with eating brown rice, stick with white. As usual, this meal is bursting with nutrients. You will be getting:

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  • Tofu: It’s rich in protein, naturally low in fat and contains little to no carbohydrate. The protein in tofu is complete, meaning that it includes all nine essential amino acids. Tofu is also an excellent source of iron; it provides up to 30% of your recommended daily allowance (RDA) per 100g serving. If you buy fortified versions of tofu, you can easily get up to 35% of your RDA of calcium.
  • Orange: It is an excellent source of fibre and immunity-boosting and skin-loving vitamin C. Vitamin C improves the absorption of iron, so eating this alongside tofu is perfection!
  • Broccoli: This is an excellent source of vitamin C, and even contains more vitamin C than many citrus fruits. Broccoli is also a rich source of lutein, an antioxidant that maintains vision, and an anti-cancer compound indole-3-carbinol.
  • Peas: One of my favourite foods! They are a good source of protein, fibre, and iron, calcium and vitamin K, which is necessary for healthy blood clotting.
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Ingredients

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  • 400g tofu, drained and cut into cubes
  • ½-inch ginger, grated
  • 2 fat garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 large spring onion, finely sliced
  • 250ml orange juice
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp dark soy sauce 
  • 2 tbsp Shaoxing rice wine
  • 1½ tsp cornflour mixed with 2 tbsp warm water 
  • Cooked basmati rice, to serve
  • Steamed broccoli, to serve
  • Steamed peas, to serve
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Directions 

  1. Carefully arrange the tofu on parchment paper and sprinkle with a pinch of salt. Bake in the oven at 200ºC for 25-30 minutes or until they are evenly browned, flipping half-way through cooking. Once cooked, set aside and keep warm. 
  2. Heat a small splash of water (or oil if you prefer) in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add spring onions, ginger and garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes to sweat. 
  3. Add the orange juice, rice wine, dark and soy sauce. Stir well then bring to a boil. Add the cornflour mixture and stir well until it is well combined. 
  4. Continue to cook the sauce over a medium heat until it thickens then turn down to a simmer. 
  5. Add the tofu, and stir gently to coat evenly with the orange sauce. 
  6. Serve the orange sauce over rice and with broccoli and peas. Sprinkle with freshly chopped coriander if you desire. 
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