Tofu poke bowls.

(I’ve been too busy with programming projects lately to do much writing, but here’s some food-based filler.)


Poke bowls are delicious, but they are also expensive and not especially good for the environment. So I’ve been working on an alternative that’s, with slight variations, vegan, vegetarian, or at least mostly soy-based.

The key is to take cubes of extra-firm tofu and fry them (e.g. in a wok) at medium heat in a mixture of sesame and coconut oil, stirring regularly because these oils can burn easily. This gives the tofu cubes a smooth, rich mouthfeel and a flavor that’s nothing like fish but goes well with many of the same ingredients. I stop frying while the cubes are still soft but are a light golden brown, which makes them roughly as soft as tuna or salmon.  Avocado oil might also be worth trying.

Easy toppings include mixed salad greens, sweet peppers, green onions, cucumbers, and avocados. You also need one trip to an Asian market to get ponzu and sriracha mayo. While you’re there, you could also get shichimi togarashi and furikake (shakeable spice mixes), kombu or dashi to cook with the rice (dashi makes it pescatarian), and if you’re adventurous, umeboshi or other Japanese pickles.

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