Tofu Sauce

[This is the first post- of many!- by Lacy J. Davis. She'll be a regular contributor to True Love Health. She's got a lot of great things to say about food, health, veganism, exercise and adventure. You should be as excited as me to read what she has to say! -Matt]

I am weird about food. This is a fact that many of my friends, family, lovers, co-workers, and acquaintances have noticed and commented on and one that becomes painfully apparent in social and business food situations alike. I am vegan, I am allergic to wheat, but most notably-I am picky. It’s just a fact.

There are very few restaurants that I rave about. I consider myself quite the epicurean and delight in many aspects of creating my own meals. Most of my meals are calculated. A balance of protein, carbs, fats, and vegetables is acquired; a variety of colors, shapes and textures are represented; and an attention to the origins of my ingredients is finely honed. While eating at restaurants can be a wonderful sensory experience, it also can stand as a painful reminder: how often have I paid too much for a plate of food that lacks love in its preparation, uses lifeless produce (if any at all) and leaves me with a full belly but a bored palate? While I have learned that relinquishing control of the exact size and shape of my meals can be beneficial, I still much prefer to imbue my meal with a certain attention before it is consumed. I rarely stray from my home at meal time but when it comes to my out – of – the – house foods of choice I will go to great lengths to acquire them.

Matt compromises with me when it comes to my food particularities. As a result, on his recent birthday adventure (a 50-mile round trip bike ride to Redondo Beach) he suggested dining at The Green Temple . This is a place that is pretty suited to my tastes (a focus on whole foods and a balanced plate) and despite being a bit more expensive than we would like, it boasts a little something that we could not help but love: a delightful side known as tofu sauce.

While the name of this delectable treat may sound like a joke- “What do vegans eat?! Rocks and tofu sauce all day?!” – the taste is anything but. It is creamy, cheesy, alfredo-y. It is simple, savory, satiating, delightful. I couldn’t exactly place why I loved this delicious cream that covered my steamed vegetables and baked potato lunch so much but one thing was certain- I did.

My tofu sauce experience took place in September, and when I returned to Southern California this December a bike ride to the tofu sauce temple of the world was at the top of my to-do list. Many factors stood in my way: The sky clouded over and misted. Matt grimaced at a 50-mile bike ride for sauce in crappy weather. (I would have done it, I swear to God!) Despite my taste buds’ desires I knew that the stormy winter season of LA (a horrible week long affair!) had won this time. I’d have to make the sauce on my own.

A quick search for “tofu sauce recipe – Green Temple” produced this recipe:

  • 3/4C Almond or Safflower oil
  • 3/4C Water
  • 1/4C Braggs Liquid Aminos
  • 2T Brewer’s Yeast
  • 1/4t Kelp Powder
  • 1/4t Spike Seasoning
  • 1/4t Basil
  • 1/8t granulated garlic
  • 1 1/2t lemon juice
  • 1 1/2t wheat-free Tamari
  • 16 oz firm tofu, rinsed well

Directions

Mix all ingredients in a food processor or blender. Serve warm or cold over anything.

(I especially loved the suggestion to serve this sauce over anything. SO right on.)

I’m not gonna lie to you, I don’t have kelp seasoning on hand. and ¾ cup of oil seemed a little extreme. I modified:

  • ⅓ cup olive oil
  • 3/4C Water
  • 1/4C + 1.5 t wheat free soy sauce
  • 2T nutritional Yeast
  • ½ t Zatar Seasoning (I figured, it was around so why not?!)
  • 1/4t Basil
  • 1/8t granulated garlic
  • 1 1/2t lemon juice
  • 28 oz firm tofu, rinsed well

You may notice that I nearly doubled the tofu recommendation and halved the liquid. This google search induced recipe was so thin it was like water! My Alfredo equivalent could never be so skimpy.

My final verdict: my sauce was just as decadent and divine as the original. While I didn’t get the benefit of a nice ride in, I did avoid the weird cold sweat that occurs when pushing the bike hard in damp weather. I added steamed veggies and a baked potato to the mix just like the original and probably saved about 80% of the price by making this healthy wholesome meal at home. Not only that- I also got to eat seconds.

(Yup, That’s a full block of tofu in a blender. Now all of your non-vegan friends can laugh at us.)

6 Comments

Filed under recipe, vegan

6 responses to “Tofu Sauce

  1. Nice post Lacy! Looking forward to seeing more in the future, you is an good riter.

  2. Tiffany

    I just ate at Green Temple today and loved the sauce. In my google search for the recipe, I found you. Thanks, can’t wait to try it.

  3. Kristen

    Looking for the nutritional value of the above recipe I came across your post. Thanks for the tip about reducing the oil which was my concern. This recipe actually originates from another restaurant… not the Green Temple. It’s called “Savory Sauce” an is from the recipe book ‘Recipes from the Heart’. It’s been served for about 30 years at The Spot in Hermosa Beach. I asked, they are not affiliated with Green Temple. I’ve tried both places and prefer The Spot. Several of the menu items are exactly the same (?) The portions are larger and you get a better value for your money…especially if you share a meal. Maybe a shorter bike ride depending on your direction. Thanks again for the tip.

    • cindy

      The answer to your question mark. I have been eating at both places for 30 years and work nearby. There was a divorce. The husband got the sauce recipe and started the green temple. He didn’t make it but the employees moved and carried on beautifully!

  4. Catherine

    Xoxo. Thank you do much!!!! I am addicted to
    This sauce. FYI my spouse and I have radically changed our diet and his cholesterol
    Dropped 70 points. We dropped dairy, eliminsted meat and feel amazing! Thanks for this!

  5. Catherine

    Woah…sorry about those typos. I was, well…just that excited! I’m hitting 50 next year, and I’ve never felt better. I never thought I’d be able to give up meat, and now I can’t imagine eating it.

    Now here’s a sauce recipe for you, although you’e probably already made this. I serve this bowl-style with broccoli, scallions, bok choy, celery and a little fennel over brown rice. My meat-loving son loves this and it satisfies his hunger.

    2 tablespoons Tahini (Living Tree Community Foods is wonderful)
    3 tablespoons Vegenaise (soy free)
    1 Lemon
    1 clove garlic minced (I use my grater)
    pinch of kosher or himalayan salt (optional)
    Add lemon till you achieve the right consistency

    so simple and soooo good!

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