October 28, 2009

Grandma's Tofu and Vegie Soup, Mushroom and Tofu Stuffed Artichokes and Capsicums

This is a delicious soup that my grandma made, using the king oyster mushrooms, left over from Sunday. It was so light, yet extremely flavoursome - I just had to take photos and post em up! She simmered some tomato wedges, sliced tofu (the fried variety, as well as the soft) and king oyster mushrooms in water for about 10-15 minutes.

Then added in roughly chopped silverbeet from the garden, a pinch of salt, dash of sesame oil, cracked white pepper and a few spoonfuls of a broth made from simmering 3 cups of vegetable stock with 1 tbs caster sugar, ¼ cup black vinegar, 1 tbs light soy sauce and a 2cm piece sliced ginger.

Grandma's Tofu and Vegetable Soup :)
I came across these gorgeous global artichokes at the fruit and veg shop down the road from my house, for only 59c each! I bought six, aswell as three bright red capsicums, which I hoped to stuff with the leftover dumpling filling in the fridge.

I learnt the procedure for preparing artichokes from the September issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller: Trim the tops of the artichokes by 3cm with a serrated knife and remove the outer leaves with your fingers until you reach the pale inner heart. Trim the stems to the base of the head, peel the remaining green exterior with a vegie peeler, and remove the inner hairy choke from the artichoke heart with a melon-baller (or a spoon if you don't have one). Then squeeze the juice of one lemon into a bowl, and toss in the artichokes to prevent them from browning. Cook the artichokes in a saucepan of boiling, salted water until they're just tender. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 170°C and prepare your stuffing. In this case, I added about one heaped teaspoon of  chopped continental parsley to 3 cups of dumpling filling, for extra flavour.

After about 15 minutes of boiling in water, I drained the artichokes, cooled them for a few minutes, and gently separated their leaves with my fingers, keeping the heads intact. Then I stuffed the heart and between the leaves of the artichokes with filling, sprinkled over some bread crumbs and grated parmesan, and tied each one with kitchen string to secure. I placed them on an ovenproof dish, poured in about half a cup of vegetable stock, drizzled over some olive oil, covered the dish with foil, and baked it for just over 1 hour.

30 minutes in, I halved the capsicums, scraped the seeds out, filled each half with the stuffing, grated over cheese, and transferred them to the oven so that they would be ready at the same time as the artichokes.

 Mushroom and Tofu Stuffed Capsicums with Gremolata (I combined ½ cup coarsely chopped parsley with the grated rind of 1 lemon, then seasoned to taste)

Mushroom and Tofu Stuffed Artichokes with Gremolata

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