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Tofu is made a lot like cheese, so it doesn’t require cooking, explains Mark Bittman, author of VB6. It does, however, benefit from marinating and—within limits—the longer the better. There are so many ways to eat this refreshing dish: over greens, brown rice or grains; with Boston lettuce leaves for wrapping; tossed with whole wheat angel hair pasta; tucked into warm corn tortillas; or of course, all on its own.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 lb. (750 g) firm tofu (1 1/2 blocks)
  • 1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml) cider vinegar or sherry vinegar
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup (8 fl. oz./250 ml) water
  • 4 scallions, sliced
  • 1 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1 bunch radishes, sliced or chopped
  • 1 cucumber, sliced or chopped
  • 1 avocado, cubed
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup (3/4 oz./20 g) chopped fresh cilantro

Directions:

Cut the tofu into small cubes. Put the vinegar, sugar, salt and water in a large bowl. Whisk to combine, then add the scallions, garlic and tofu; toss gently to coat with the marinade. Refrigerate for at least 15 minutes or up to 2 days.

Drain the tofu mixture, reserving the pickling liquid. Put the tofu mixture in a large bowl and add the radishes, cucumber and avocado.

Toss the ceviche with 2 Tbs. of the reserved liquid, the olive oil and pepper. Taste and adjust the seasoning, adding more pickling liquid if you like. Sprinkle with the cilantro and serve. Serves 4.

Variations:
- Greek-Style Tofu Ceviche: Use red wine vinegar instead of cider vinegar. Swap 1 small red onion for the scallions, 2 tomatoes for the radishes, capers or chopped olives for the avocado, and parsley for the cilantro.

- Vietnamese-Style Tofu Ceviche: Use lime juice instead of the vinegar and add 1 or 2 tsp. fish sauce (unless you’re being strictly vegan). Try fresh mint or Thai basil instead of the cilantro. Top with crushed peanuts if desired.

More Ideas: Make it even more herbaceous by tossing in fresh basil and mint along with the cilantro.

Adapted from VB6, by Mark Bittman (Clarkson Potter, 2013).