Usually when I have a block of extra firm water packed tofu in the fridge it either gets turned into tofu scramble, chopped up and thrown into something random, or cut into strips that I heavily season and place on top of a salad or whatever else needs flavor. Now, since this post is about barbecue sauce, I'll tell you my true feelings. I've never really liked BBQ sauce, at all. The stuff that comes on Arby's sandwiches that I remember eating as a kid, gross. The BBQ flavored potato chips, extra gross. The kind of BBQ sauce that comes in a bottle? You guess it, gross. All of those flavors remind me of poor little piggies being turned into sandwiches. However, what I do like is brown sugar and ketchup. I know, I know . . . those are pretty big ingredients in BBQ sauce, so why don't I like it? Probably because I like stuff better when I make it. So I decided to make some!
Let me just tell you, if you like sauces that are so sweet and spicy that your nose is running in between bites this is the sauce for you. It's very simple to make, I'm still a little sick so I didn't want to go to the store and just made this out of ingredients from my pantry and fridge! I got the idea to pair the BBQ with tofu from another cooking blog. So enough with the talking lets get to some pictures!
Quick shot of the finished product. I made some cous cous to go with (I'll put cous cous on almost anything) for a quick, simple meal.
Stephanie's Homemade BBQ Sauce
- 1/3 cup ketchup
- 1/6 cup water
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1/2 tablespoon vinegar (I didn't have any apple cider vinegar so I used red wine vinegar)
- 4 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon mustard
- 1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika (will give it a smokey, cooked for hours kind of flavor)
- 1 teaspoon Bragg's Liquid Amino's (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Black pepper to taste
Mix all of your ingredients together and stir continually over low heat for 5-10 minutes, or until thickened. I sliced my tofu into 8 equal strips, lightly brushed one side with the sauce, put the tofu into a pan sauce side down, and smothered the top with the remaining sauce. Bake at 425 degrees for about 30 minutes, or until firm. While the cous cous was "cooking" I added two tablespoons of Smart Balance, parsley, and scallions. Plate, then you're finished! Super simple, filling, healthy, and delicious! I was originally going to add crushed red pepper flakes to the sauce, but after the initial taste test decided to leave them out. The heat is definitely turned down a bit after baking, and when the tofu is paired with buttery cous cous it doesn't burn quite so badly. Still a very hot sauce though, but if you wanted more heat you could add a bit more cayenne or add red pepper flakes.
This is yet another great transition food for most people. The texture of the tofu is soft, but not squishy or watery and all you really remember is the sweet, tangy, spicy flavor of the sauce!