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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Mother Knows Best

My mother's been a pretty good sport during "The Vegetarian Years", a.k.a., my life since 1985.  She even requests that we go to a vegan restaurant about once a month.  One of her few vegetarian digs has been to mispronounce tofu as "soul food" and I correct her every time.  I admit that she's in the majority when it comes to mocking tofu, with the general consensus being 1) it doesn't taste like anything and/or 2) it tastes gross and/or 3) what exactly is it?  My response is 1) it tastes like whatever you season, marinate, and/or serve it with, 2) see #1, and 3) tofu is soybean curd, a relative of the very healthy, natural soybean.

My Beautiful Mother and festive sparkler

It may not be nice to fool mother nature but once in a while it's fun to fool my mother.   So when she was over for lunch on Saturday, and while she was waiting for the main course, I brought her a little glass bowl filled with a delicious egg (wink, wink) salad for her to spread on some bread.  "How do you like that?" I asked and she replied "it's very good egg salad" and I said "no it's not" and she said "what do you mean?" and I said "it's soul-food".  She hesitated for a few seconds and with a big smile said "it's still very good!"

Now, therefore, I hereby proclaim that today is Tofu Tuesday and today's special tofu recipe is "Egg" Salad, with a side of homemade Dutch yellow potato chips.  This is very reminiscent of one of my favorite childhood lunches that mommy used to make - egg salad on wonder bread and a bag of chips. Actually, now that I think about it, tofu is soul-food.  Mother does know best..

Better Than "Egg" Salad (Really)
1 pkg. extra firm tofu (water packed)
1/2 cup shredded carrots, finely diced 
1/3 cup celery, finely diced
1/4 cup green onion, finely diced
1/3 cup Vegenaise/mayo (or as much as you like)
1 tsp. turmeric (or more if you like)
seasalt and fresh ground blackpepper

In a medium sized bowl, take a fork and run it through the block of tofu until it resembles diced egg whites.  Add the carrots, celery, and green onion and stir the mixture together.  Add the Veganaise and turmeric and mix until well incorporated.  Season with s&p, mix again, taste.  This makes enough for a bunch of sandwiches.

Dutch Yellow Potato Chips
8 Melissa's Dutch yellow potatoes, medium sized
vegetable oil for frying
sprig of fresh rosemary

water with lemon added for holding the potatoes between cutting and frying

Fill a bowl with about 4 cups of water and the juice of 1/2 a fresh lemon.  Using your Martin Yan kitchen knife ( if you have one or another sharp knife, cut the potatoes into very thin slices then place them in the water until all the potatoes are sliced. 

In a small frying pan add vegetable oil about 1 1/2" deep and heat until sizzling.  Throw a few of the rosemary leaves into the oil, followed by some of the blotted potato slices.  Cook about 4 minutes or so per side until lightly golden, and slightly crisp on the edges.  Remove the potato slices from the oil and place on paper towels to drain.  Sprinkle with s&p.  Repeat with more blotted potato slices.  Repeat.  Repeat.  Repeat. 
This makes a nice pile of chips.

For more potato info go to

For more tofu ideas go to



  1. Love the article! Egg salad was my favorite sandwich as a child too. My mommy sometimes made it on white bread and sometimes on rye and both were wonderful to me.
    Please give our love to your beautiful mother!

  2. Faye, I'm glad the post brought back sweet memories of your mommy. Just happened to be talking to mine on the phone and read her your comments. She laughed and said "thank you and love to them to".

  3. Thanks, Nancy. At this point, your "Soul Food Egg Salad" tempts me more than regular egg salad. I hope to make it the next time I have good, firm tofu. The photo looks very appetizing.

    I like your rosemary potato chips too, and it's much easier to think of making them in a small frying pan. I don't like using a big deep fryer.

  4. Funny, I had old school egg salad today and now I'm craving the soul food version again and will probably make some tomorrow. Glad you like the picture too.

  5. Your mom looks beautiful and what a lovely post Nancy. I'm going to try this receipe! Did you really make the chips?

  6. Thanks Anonymous. Yes, I made the chips and ate every last one all by myself. Those DYP's make the cutest little chips and the rosemary in the oil is yum. P.S. Who are you?