Monday, July 10, 2006

Tofu Tuna Salad

When I go through periods where I don't cook much, I start to feel guilty and anxious. No one makes me feel this way- it's just something that I put on myself. I guess when I have a span of time where I'm cooking like crazy, I really feel like I'm making progress on my culinary journey. So when I don't spend much time in the kitchen, I guess I worry that the skills I'd worked on will go down the drain. "If ya don't use it, you'll lose it!" I tell myself.

Of course that is not true- cooking is sort of like riding a bike. Once you learn, you won't forget. Sure, you might be rusty after long periods of inactivity but the basics stick with you. After noticing that other bloggers have pared down their cooking during these hot summer months, my guilt has subsided. When I read about Molly's salad days, I had to agree- sometimes less is more. In fact, a lot of the time, less tastes pretty damn great. I'd be crazy to even attempt standing in front of the stove when we have no air conditioning and the temps outside are nearing 97 degrees! And with so much beautiful produce available at the Farmer's Markets, there is no need to really even cook. Just take a few things, assemble and enjoy the flavors of summer. After all, restraint is probably one of the most admired qualities of any respected chef, so it's probably time I focused on THAT instead of mulling over the meals I didn't make.

With J's band back in full rehearsal mode and a four month tour coming up, I'll be having many suppers for one which is a great chance to practice that restraint. The other night I just whipped together this salad out of whatever I had in the fridge, and it was the perfect, cool dish for a hot summer night.

Tofu tuna salad

1 half-pack of silken tofu
1 can albacore tuna in water
1/4 cup corn (freshly cut from the cob is best but canned if you don't have)
As many thinly sliced onions as you like (white or red)
1/3 cup diced green onions
Thinly shredded green cabbage
Mixed baby greens
Sesame salad dressing
Toasted sesame seeds

Combine all ingredients and enjoy! I used the sesame dressing featured here but you can use any Asian-flavored dressing you like. High in protein, low in fat and best of all- totally satisfying.

I know the combo of shredded cabbage, corn and tuna may sound strange, but in Japan this is very common. It tastes really great and you get extra texture from cabbage that you don't get from lettuce.

Happy summer!

1 comment:

carlyn said...

yumm....the best dishes come from "picking through the fridge". You are very creative and the salad looks delicious!!!