Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Vegan Stir-Fry Salad Wrap

I'm going to challenge the common belief that meat is the soul and substance of a wrap. And I'm not going to take the easy way out by relying on cheese. Here, I propose a delicious, filling, vegan alternative. I call it the stir-fry salad wrap.

1 tortilla wrap of your choice (suggestion: soft whole wheat)
A handful of salad greens (suggestion: organic baby spring mix)
Sliced mushrooms (suggestion: baby bella)
Cubed firm tofu
Cherry tomatoes
Choice of veggies (suggestion: sliced bell peppers, julienned carrots, edamame, peas, sliced onion)
Cooking oil (suggestion: olive oil)
Salt and pepper
Soy sauce

As the name of this recipe would suggest, there are three main components to this meal: the stir-fry, the salad, and the wrap. The wrap and the salad are self-explanatory. The stir-fry requires cooking.

Heat a tablespoon of your cooking oil in the bottom of a saucepan. Once it's hot, throw in the tofu and the mushrooms, and let them sit for about a minute. If you're going to use sliced onions, also put those in. After a minute, put in the rest of your veggies, with the exception of the cherry tomatoes. As everything is cooking, season with soy sauce, salt, and pepper.

In this process, if the bottom of the pan is too hot, the oil will burn away too quickly. It is helpful to add about 1/4 cup of water to the pan and then cover it for a few minutes, letting everything simmer. There should only be enough water to cover the bottom of the pan; if you drown your veggies, they will come out soggy.

The cherry tomatoes should be cooked separately. Slice them into halves or thirds. Again, heat a small amount (about 1/2 tablespoon) of cooking oil in a pan. When the oil is hot, drop the tomatoes in. They should start sizzling immediately. Drizzle with equal amounts of soy sauce and vinegar, and mix them a little so the taste is evenly dispersed. When they start to appear darker and less firm, remove from heat.

Heat the tortilla wrap briefly (30-45 seconds in a microwave will do) so that it is soft. Cover the middle section with your salad greens, and then add your cooked stir-fry and cherry tomatoes. Roll up and enjoy.


This wrap will leave you feeling satisfied because of the variety of textures and tastes that comprise it. I personally think the tofu and mushroom are crucial in adding substance. The flavor comes mostly from the soy sauce and pepper, but the tomatoes will add a surprising and delightful zest.

This recipe is really fun to experiment with! Try different combinations of vegetables, different spices, etc. If you're a meat-eater, feel free to add grilled chicken, fish, or sausages. One of my favorite variants is to use just tofu and edamame, and then season them with soy sauce and a sprinkling of dried seaweed.

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