It’s Monday and the week ahead may be grueling. You’re ready to tackle all tasks, but you are probably not feeling the mood or the taste for anything meat-like, especially since it is still lent. So here are three meals that are easy to make, absolutely delicious and most importantly MEAT-FREE.
Let's start with some nice sweet Barbecue Tofu.
Okay, so here's what you'll need: a slab of tofu, salt, black pepper, garlic, onion, sugar, and, the barbecue sauce of course, and any seasoning you prefer. Cut as much tofu as your heart and stomach desires into 3-4 inch cubes. Season with salt, black pepper, and finely chopped garlic and onion to taste. Mix well until the seasoning is evenly incorporated with the tofu. Heat a pan over medium heat with your preferred cooking oil, then fry each block of tofu for 5-7 minutes on each side, or until the surface has a crispy texture. Remove the tofu and place it on a napkin to absorb the excess oil — because oil pon face not cute. Add 1-3 tablespoons sugar to the same skillet and cook until it darkens. Do not burn it. Stir the sugar until it becomes a thick liquid consistency. Add the now-fried tofu blocks to the skillet and coat with caramelized sugar. Now for the big attraction, the barbecue sauce! Add ½ of a cup of barbecue sauce in the skillet, coat the tofu, and ¼ cup of water. Cover the pan and allow it to simmer on low heat for 5-7 minutes. At this point, you may add extra powder seasoning to the sauce per your desire, then you are done. You can have this with fries, rice or even some nice mashed potatoes.
If Tofu is not your fancy perhaps an ackee wrap may be more to your liking. You will need: ackee, seasonings-onion, garlic, scallion, thyme, vegetable oil and pepper, and whatever wrap you choose. You may add some tomato and sweet pepper if you want. Let’s assume your ackee is uncooked. Start by giving the ackee a good rinse under cool water before placing them in a pot of boiling water. Boil until the ackee is tender but still firm, and this will generally take around 7-13 minutes. After this, drain the ackee from the pot and let it aside for a minute or so. Heat a pan with your preferred cooking oil over a medium fire and add your seasoning. When they turn translucent and begin to emit an aroma reminiscent of your grandmother's cooking, it's time to add your ackee. Season with salt and black pepper to taste. Slice tomatoes and sweet peppers and add those as well. Cover your pot and let it simmer for about 2-4 minutes. Now for the wrap, you can toast in a pan if you want. Place 1-2 table spoons of the now-cooked ackee into the center of the wrap. Fold neatly so that nothing spills out, and enjoy!
Chickpea is a favourite among vegans, vegetarians and other non-meat eaters. And curry is often their preferred way to make it. You will need chickpeas (canned works just fine), curry powder, paprika, cayenne pepper, ½ of a medium sized onion, 3 cloves of garlic, 1 teaspoon of grated ginger, 2 stalks of escallion, vegetable oil and a ½ cup of unsweetened coconut milk. To begin, heat the vegetable oil in a saucepan. Sauté the chopped onions until transparent, then add the garlic, escallion, and ginger. Add the curry powder, cayenne pepper, and paprika and stir until it creates a delectable aroma. Do not allow it burn, so stir for no more than 2 minutes. It's time for the chickpeas! Stir in a can of chickpeas of your choice until covered in the curry. Allow the coconut milk and a splash of water to boil in the saucepan for 10-15 minutes on low heat. When the chickpeas are tender to the touch, its ready! This meal is best served with a big plate of white rice and side of ripe plantain.
And there you have it three meals for Meatless Mondays, so enjoy!