Spicy Tofu with Grilled Asparagus

This was my dinner this past weekend. It was enjoyed by all, including my meat-loving brother. I totally agree that if you say "I don't like tofu." It's because you have not had it prepared correctly. Preparation makes a huge difference. I pulled from two recipes to get this tofu, so it's something like an original creation, but not quite. I am trying to get on track to create my own original recipes, taking baby steps by getting creative in taking the guidance in preparation, and mixing and matching sauces and flavors as I think they would work! This one was a hit!

Spicy Tofu with Grilled Asparagus
Adapted from Food Network Magazine and comowater

1       package extra firm tofu
1       cup panko breadcrumbs
1/4    cup flour
3       tablespoons hoisin sauce
2       tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1       tablespoon Asian chile sauce (such as Sriracha)
2       teaspoons cornstarch

Slice tofu into 1/4 inch slices. Place 2-3 paper towels on a plate. Add one layer of tofu slices. Add another layer of paper towels, and repeat until all tofu is layered between paper towels. Place a kitchen towel over the final layer of paper towels and place a heavy pot or pan on top of the kitchen towel. Press tofu for at least an hour, which will create a firmer, heartier texture for the final dish.

Whisk together hoisin sauce, balsamic vinegar, Asian Chile Sauce and cornstarch. Combine breadcrumbs with flour in shallow dish (for dredging). Brush both sides of tofu with sauce mixture. Coat both sides of tofu slices with breadcrumb-flour mixture.

Heat oil over medium heat. Lay coated tofu in oil. Fry on one side until golden brown (approx. 3 minutes). Once the first side is golden brown, flip and fry for another 2-3 minutes. Drain on paper towel.

For asparagus, brush with olive oil, grill on a grill pan until cooked through (about 10-15 minutes total).

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