This is my own healthy version of Chinese take out. I think Americans have an obsession with that orange chicken type dish. I was set out to create something even more delicious, healthy and nutritious to help with that Chinese food craving. The sauce is sweet, slightly sour, orange deliciousness. And my sexy taste testing hubby gave this the thumbs up. He loved it, as did my kids! And while I preferred the tofu over the "chicken", he liked the "chicken" over the tofu. Feel free to throw in any vegetables you like. I just put carrots in mine, because that was what I had on hand. Also, the Nira (garlic chives) can be found at your Asian food markets, and they are so good and add something special to the dish. But, if you can't find any nira, you can use chives, just use way less. Only garnish with chives, instead of adding tons to the dish.
Sweet Orange "Chikenless" and Tofu over brown rice
What You Need:
1 Package extra firm tofu
1 package of Trader Joes Chickenless strips (if you can't find this product, sub in another package of tofu, or use the Gardein brand "chicken" breasts and cut into strips, or you could use seitan strips)
2 cups of Mixed veggies of your choice, carrots, broccoli, celery, snow peas, etc.
1/2 cup Nira (garlic chives) or regular chives, found at Asian Markets
a few Tbsp. Extra Virgin olive oil
Sea salt and pepper
3/4 cup of good quality not from concentrate orange juice, such as Naked Brand
3/4 cup of Sucanat (natural sugar cane)
2 Tbsp soy sauce
2 Tbsp Annies organic ketchup (this might seem weird, but it is the secret ingredient here!)
1 cup white vinegar
Japanese chili oil (optional, found at Asian Markets. You could also add a few (maybe 1/4 tsp) of crushed red pepper flakes to add a little heat.)
4 Tbsp. Arrowroot powder (this is an all natural thickening agent, and a better choice than cornstarch, although you could sub in cornstarch with the same results, just use 1/2 the amount, so 2 Tbsp. cornstarch)
Precooked brown rice
To Make Tofu:
Drain tofu, and cut into small cubes. Lay the tofu out on a cutting board along with the Chickenless and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. If you want to help eliminate some of the tofu moisture, you can toss the tofu in a little flour to coat a little.
Heat a heavy skillet over medium high heat, and add a few Tbsp of Olive Oil. Brown the tofu and "chicken". Remove from the pan, and then add your veggies into the pan to warm through and cook a little, but not overcook.
To Make the Sauce:
In a saucepan, add all of your ingredients. Heat over low to warm through. Put 4 Tbsp. of arrowroot into a small dish, and add 1/2 cup of the warm sauce. Mix well to make sure there are no lumps. Add the arrowroot mixture into the sauce a little at a time and cook for 1 or 2 minutes to thicken sauce. You may not need to use all of the arrowroot/sauce mixture. Remove from heat.
In a large serving platter add your tofu, "chicken", veggies, and nira. Pour the sauce over and toss to coat everything.
This dish is great served family style at the table, so everyone can dish up for themselves.