Before I started eating a low carb diet, I ate plenty of vegetarian meals, alternating meat with other protein like dairy, beans and tofu. But beans are not low carb and dairy is high in calories and fat; so, in my vegetarian low carb meals, I use usually use tofu. My favorite brand of tofu is The Bridge, made locally in Connecticut. It is firm. My favorite way to cook it is to cube it up and add tamari and sesame oil and bake it until it gets light brown. The outside is firm and the inside soft and it has a satisfying “bite” to it. Tonight, I made it and added it last minute to my “ramen” soup. Delicious!
I use a generous 8-ounce portion of tofu for the meal because nothing else has enough calories to make it filling. For dinner. If using real ramen noodles, you could cut down on the amount of tofu used.
This recipe is a good basic one. Feel free to experiment with other proteins or vegetables. Sautéed shitakes, broccoli, spinach, kale and cabbage are all good in there. Chicken, shrimp, pork, beef works in instead of tofu. If you don’t like spicy kimchi, just omit.
Low carb shirataki noodles
Tofu “Ramen” Soup
2 pounds tofu, cut into small pieces and dried
2 packages tofu shirataki “noodles”
1-pound baby bok choy, stems and leaves separated and chopped (broccoli, spinach, bok choy, kale, cabbage)
4-8 ounces kimchi, chopped
1 tablespoon Korean chili (optional)
3 cups chicken or vegetable stock
½ bunch scallion, chopped
1-inch piece of ginger, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
4 tablespoons low sodium tamari or 1/3 cup yellow or white miso
3 tablespoons sesame oil
1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Heat oven to 350 and place tofu on a pan, with a piece of parchment paper. Take 1 tablespoon of sesame oil and 1 tablespoon tamari and coat tofu. Bake tofu about 45 minutes or until light brown.
On medium, sauté garlic, scallion and ginger until fragrant, about a minute. Raise temperature to medium high and add bok choy stems and stir until wilted, a few minutes. Add bok choy leaves, kimchi and juice, Korean chili, shirataki noodles and stir. Add stock and bring to a boil. If using miso, ladle out some stock and add to miso and stir until dissolved. Lower heat so it is not boiling and add miso. If not using miso, add tamari. Turn off heat and add sesame oil. Ladle into bowls and add baked tofu. Serve with sesame oil on the side.
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