Madras Lentil…or cheating a homemade meal, the Trader Joe’s way!

Sometimes, you just don’t feel like cooking an entire meal start to finish…but you still want it to taste like you’ve put in the effort. Enter Trader Joe’s. I have an undying love affair with Trader Joe’s, which I’m sure I’ll go into more detail about at a later date. One of their product lines we use regularly is their “Indian Fare” line, which is a variety of quick and easy Indian food that only needs to be microwaved to enjoy. It’s cheap, it’s easy, and every kind we’ve tried tastes delicious. More importantly, they are included on this handy TJ’s g-free grocery list.

So let’s get to the recipe, shall we?

Madras Lentil (or any Indian Fare variety) with Tofu

1 box chosen Indian Fare variety

2-3 cups of uncooked brown rice (By cups, I mean those cups you get with your rice cooker…and we always make extra for leftovers. Use your judgement.)

1 package firm or extra firm tofu

light sour cream for garnish (optional)

olive oil for frying (1 to 2 Tbsp)

The main players

1. Cook brown rice according to rice cooker specifications, or on the stove top. This should take about 20-30 minutes, depending on method.

2. Drain tofu and pat with paper towels to soak up some moisture. Cut into 8 roughly equal-sized slices.

mmm, pale tofu

 3. Heat up olive oil in large, non-stick pan over medium heat. Use oil sparingly. Once heated, place the tofu “steaks” into the pan and spread evenly.

Fryin' time!

4. Brown both sides of the tofu, about 5-7 minutes per side. There is no good method I’ve found to flip tofu in a pan. Tongs, spatula, fingers…inevitably one or more pieces of tofu breaks apart. Go with it.

5. When tofu is almost finished, cook Indian Fare according to package directions.

6. Place fried tofu on a plate covered in paper towels to blot some of the excess oil.

Tofu falls apart, we roll with it.

7. Place cooked brown rice in the bottom of bowls. Cover with Indian Fare, top with tofu and sour cream to combat some of the spice, if desired.

8. Enjoy the fruits of your not-so-laborious labor!

The big finish

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