With so many different dietary preferences, it can be a bit of a challenge to meet the protein requirements at the dinner table. That’s why we adopted a mixed grill for the main dish in our holiday menu. We embraced organic firm tofu for the vegans, organic chicken rather than a full-sized turkey, and pasture-raised pork tenderloin rather than ham to create three mains starring one delicious marinade.
Pressing tofu removes any excess liquid, regardless of how firm it is, to enhance its spongelike ability to soak up flavour. For a how-to on pressing your tofu, check out alive.com and search “Cooking with Tofu,” where you’ll find plenty of other useful tofu tips as well.
Tip: Another option for a delicious main is coho or sockeye salmon. Brush generously with our maple syrup marinade and bake at 400 F (200 C), skin-side down, in a large roasting pan for 15 to 20 minutes, depending on thickness, until flesh is almost opaque when tested with sharp paring knife.
In small saucepan, combine marinade ingredients. Whisk together and heat over medium heat for 10 minutes for flavours to fully blend. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 400 F (200 C). Place oven racks in bottom and top third of oven. Generously grease 2 small baking sheets or pans. Set aside.
Using sharp butcher knife on cutting board, cut each chicken breast crosswise through the bone into halves. Place 4 pieces on oiled baking sheet and brush generously with marinade. Place sheet on bottom rack of preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes. Brush with more marinade and continue to bake for 15 more minutes, or until instant-read thermometer reads 165 F (75 C) when inserted into thickest portion of the breast.
Meanwhile, on separate cutting board, cut drained tofu into 1 in (2.5 cm) cubes. Place in bowl and sprinkle with cornstarch, tossing gently to lightly coat. Place on second oiled baking sheet, leaving space between cubes. Brush with marinade. Place sheet on top rack of oven and bake for 15 minutes. Using tongs, turn cubes for even browning and crisping. Continue baking for 10 more minutes, or until cubes are crisp.
While chicken and tofu are baking, turn tapered end of trimmed tenderloin underneath and tie with kitchen twine to make it an even thickness. Pat dry. In large ovenproof skillet, heat butter and oil over medium-high heat. Brown tenderloin all over in hot skillet, turning often with tongs. It should take about 5 minutes. Brush tenderloin generously with marinade and place skillet in oven alongside chicken. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until instant-read thermometer registers 145 F (65 C). Remove tenderloin from pan to a clean cutting board to rest for a couple of minutes.
Turn oven on to broil. Place chicken under broiler for only a minute to crisp up skin, watching carefully to avoid burning.
To serve, place chicken on warmed serving platter. Thinly slice tenderloin crosswise and place alongside grilled chicken. Garnish.
Place grilled tofu on a separate smaller platter and garnish.
This recipe is part of the Super Festive Feast collection.
This simple dessert celebrates the glory that is the summer strawberry. Don’t feel you have to stick to strawberries here; swapping them for ripe peaches would also make for a stunning ending to any meal. What to gild the lily with? Add a dollop of whipped coconut cream or a small scoop of vanilla ice cream. Flower power Orange blossom water (also known as orange flower water) is produced by water distillation of the blossoms of a bitter orange tree. Just like rose water, a little goes a long way. So, take care and use just a drop or two, tasting as you go so as not to overwhelm but rather to complement the other flavours in a dish.
Ever thought about making burgers as an appetizer or as a potluck meal for friends and family? Try making your favourite burger into bite-sized portions. They might be small in size, but they won’t be small in flavour. These burgers also pair well with a Greek salad for a delicious mid-week lunch or dinner. Fresh is best Squeeze fresh lemon on patties while cooking to give them the fresh zing of citrus.
What worldwide vacation is complete without a stop in Italy? Dad won’t miss the meat in this flavourful mushroom alternative complete with Italian spices and a zesty vegetable tapenade. Portobellos have a uniquely “meaty” texture and act as a sponge to lock in loads of flavour. This meaty plant-based burger is sure to become a favourite—even with any meat-lovers in your life. Custom-made! Don’t be afraid to customize your burger buns to fit your patties. If your bun’s too big, trim off excess and save the trimmed bits of bread, but don’t discard. Instead, cut into small cubes; drizzle with some olive oil, sea salt, and seasonings of choice; bake at 350 F (180 C) for 10 to 15 minutes, and you’ll have delicious homemade croutons for use in soups and salads throughout the week.
Next stop, Asia! This shrimp burger combines classic Asian flavours with unique toppings for rich umami flavour with the saltiness of the ocean. Whether served on a bun or over rice in a more traditional Asian-style meal, try some unique miso yogurt or wasabi mayo dressing for a fabulous flavour bomb. Keep those burgers juicy Place raw patties on a plate or tray, and cover and freeze or refrigerate for 15 to 30 minutes to keep them together and to lock in moisture.