This is one of those savory Filipino favorites usually consisted of organ meats. The good news is it can be veganized the healthy way using tofu & shitake mushrooms combined ! What’s great with using shitake mushroom, aside from containing some B vitamins and minerals, it doesn’t only absorb flavor but it also gives chewy meaty consistency & natural umami flavor to this dish ! No need to deprive ourselves with tasty dish like this one !
1 lb firm tofu
8 whole pcs shitake mushroom (used fresh here but you can used dehydrated ones, as long as you rehydrate it well before cooking)
few stems of lemongrass
few pandan leaves
1/2 cup annatto seeds, soaked in 1 cup of hot water
1 small carrot minced
1/2 green bell pepper, minced
apple cider 1 tbsp or to taste
2 tsps red sili (chili) seeded & minced, optional
2 tablespoons ginger minced
1 medium onion chopped
6 cloves garlic minced
3 to 4 pieces dried bay leaves
few tbsp cooking oil (or alternate with minimal water for oil free cooking)
Himalayan salt & pepper to taste
Slice tofu about 1/2 inch thick then either surface fry both sides or air fry, for oil free cooking, until slightly firm on the outside.
Together with shitake mushroom, simmer tofu slices, for about 10-15 mins in water with added lemon grass & pandan leaves.
Drain both shitake mushrooms and tofu, then mince. Make sure to set aside some of the broth to be used later for flavor.
Sauté ginger, garlic, and onion in medium heat with cooking oil nor minimal water for oil free cooking.
Add the minced carrots & green bell pepper then cook for about 3 to 5 mins or until almost cooked, while stirring once in a while.
Pour in annatto water with the seeds strained and stir.
Add minced tofu & shitake mushroom & let them simmer together for about 5 mins. Add the set aside broth.
Add the dried bay leaves & simmer until some of the liquid evaporates while adding apple cider vinegar to taste.
Season with salt & ground black pepper then stir. Great with steamed rice ! Serves about 5 to 6 people.