Guest Post: Tofu, Portabella and Zucchini Skewers by Living Lou
We have a guest in the kitchen! Louisa of Living Lou is back in our kitchen making everyone feel special with her vegan-friendly skewers! These summer-centric kabobs will be adored by all of your backyard guests. As summer begins to fade, I’m trying to spend as much time as possible soaking up the sun and hot weather. That means grilling as many meals as possible. It’s so easy to think of super meat-centric dishes for a barbecue, but I’m always trying to find new ways to change things up and serve something a little unexpected and veggie-forward.
That’s where these portabella, tofu and zucchini skewers come in. One of the things that tends to happen at a barbecue is that the vegetarians and vegans kind of get the short end of the stick. When I’m having friends over, I want everyone to feel important! That’s why these skewers are the perfect option because while they are super simple to put together, they give off a much more complicated and thoughtful vibe.
Mushrooms and zucchini are one of my favourite pairings and I wanted to highlight the way the flavours change when the vegetables are grilled. I opted for portabellas, because of their natural meatiness which holds up well on the grill and also makes these skewers more substantial.
When I was developing this recipe, I went in the direction of a more Japanese flavour because I love the complexities of the spicy, sweet and salty combination. All it takes is a quick mixture of sesame oil, chili garlic sauce, soy sauce and a little rice vinegar to amp up the flavour—and you probably already have these ingredients in your pantry!
When it comes to grilling mushrooms, this technique works best with portabellas , which take about 8 minutes to cook. This is just enough time for the zucchini to cook through and the tofu to get a hint of smoky, grilled flavour.
The trick is cutting all of your veggies into similar sizes so they cook evenly. I use medium-sized portabella mushrooms and quarter them and then I slice the zucchini in ½” rounds, turning every couple of minutes on the grill ensures that the marinade doesn’t burn (there’s a touch of sugar in there), and instead caramelizes on the grill.Tofu, Portabella and Zucchini Skewers
Prep: 20 minutes | Cook: 10 minutes | Makes 8 8-inch skewers, serves 4
2 tbsp soy sauce 2 tbsp sesame oil 2 tsp rice vinegar 2 1/2 tsp chili garlic sauce 1 tsp granulated sugar
4 medium sized portabella mushrooms, stems removed, caps quartered
3 zucchini, sliced in ½” rounds
1-350g block extra-firm tofu, cut into 1” cubes (you may have some tofu cubes leftover)
1. Soak 8 8-inch bamboo skewers in warm water for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small bowl whisk soy with sesame oil, rice vinegar, chili garlic sauce and granulated sugar.
2. Thread mushrooms, zucchini and tofu onto skewers, alternating ingredients until all have been used.
3. Preheat oiled grill to medium. Brush skewers all over with soy mixture and grill for 8-10 minutes, covered or until mushrooms and zucchini are cooked through and lightly charred. Flipping skewers every 2 minutes to avoid burning.
The barbecues aren’t going away anytime soon, especially when these flavourful skewers are on the grill! As always, a big thanks to our girl Louisa for sharing her seasonally-inspired eats!!