The more you cook with it, the more you realize: Tofu really is the great kitchen chameleon. It can stand on its own — and taste like itself — in a simple, sublime dish of chilled tofu with a spicy topping. Dusted with cornstarch, fried and coated in a peppery-sweet sauce, it can approximate mushrooms or even beef in a hot pot. Crumbled and mixed with chilies, vinegar, garlic and more, it becomes a ringer for fresh pork chorizo.

I had long been skeptical, though, of its ability to play the part of eggs — you know, in a “scramble.” I couldn’t imagine that its texture could truly compete with that of soft curds, particularly when eggs are cooked slowly. So I avoided those recipes.

I shouldn’t have. A recipe in Andrew Weil’s latest book, “Fast Food, Good Food,” seemed worth trying, perhaps because he calls for the scramble to be combined with a fresh and chunky salsa, avocados and tortillas – one of my favorite ways to eat eggs. But there is more wisdom buried in this recipe: Turmeric adds that appealing golden color, offset by a little diced red bell pepper, and a combination of cumin and a little cayenne gives the scramble an earthy flavor.

I was right on one count: The texture didn’t remind me of eggs (at least not properly cooked ones). But once I stopped thinking about it that way and let the tofu be tofu, I found it just plain delicious.

Tofu scramble with salsa cruda

4 servings

Andrew Weil, the physician and healthful-lifestyle coach who developed the recipe, advocates letting pressed garlic sit for at least 10 minutes before adding it to a dish. That allows allicin, the compound responsible for garlic’s health benefits, to form.

MAKE AHEAD: The salsa can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Adapted from “Fast Food, Good Food: More Than 150 Quick and Easy Ways to Put Healthy, Delicious Food on the Table,” by Weil (Little, Brown, 2015).

Ingredients

For the salsa

1/2 cup tightly packed cilantro leaves, coarsely chopped

1 cup chopped tomatoes

1/4 cup diced red bell pepper

1/4 cup diced red onion

1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

For the tofu scramble

4 corn tortillas, for serving (optional)

2 tablespoons grapeseed oil

1 small onion, diced

3 tablespoons diced red bell pepper

3 cloves garlic, run through a garlic press and allowed to sit for 10 minutes (see headnote)

16 ounces extra-firm tofu, drained and crumbled into small pieces

1 teaspoon ground turmeric

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon sea salt

1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper

Flesh of 1 avocado, thinly sliced, for serving (optional)

Steps

For the salsa: Combine the cilantro, tomatoes, red bell pepper, red onion, jalapeno and lime juice in a medium bowl, stirring until thoroughly blended. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

For the tofu scramble: If you plan to serve it with tortillas, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the tortillas on a baking sheet; bake for 5 minutes or just until warmed through. (Alternatively, you can wrap the tortillas in a clean dish towel and microwave on LOW for 45 seconds.)

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once the oil shimmers, stir in the onion and diced red bell pepper; cook until the onion is starting to soften, about 2 minutes. Stir in the pressed garlic; cook for 30 seconds, then add the crumbled tofu, turmeric, cumin, sea salt and cayenne pepper, stirring to distribute the spices; cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the tofu is starting to brown.

Serve the scramble right away, with the salsa and the warm tortillas and avocado, if using.

Nutrition | Per serving: 190 calories, 11 g protein, 10 g carbohydrates, 12 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 550 mg sodium, 2 g dietary fiber, 3 g sugar


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.