Get down with your bad vegan barbecue self this weekend! Simmer up some savory maple whiskey barbecue sauce and slather it on some grilled tofu, for these intensely delicious barbecue tofu sandwiches.
I can't take full credit for this one. I picked up some whiskey barbecue tofu from a buffet at the supermarket last week. I know. Thefting recipe ideas from a supermarket. What's happening to me? It was a really good supermarket though (Wegman's rules!) and some seriously good tofu, though I think my version is better (sorry Wegmans). Once I tasted the original version of this stuff I immediately wanted to recreate it at home. In addition to being fun and tasty, it gave me a great excuse to work my newly found grilling skills and explore the combination of maple and whiskey.
I loved this sauce. Loved, loved, loved it. My husband mentioned drinking it out of a shot glass, and he, like me, doesn't much like anything that's drunk from a shot glass, so I take his statement as high praise. The sauce is good. Even if you don't like tofu, just make the sauce and put it on something. Or don't. Drink it out of a shot glass if you must.
Assuming you are going with tofu here, keep in mind that tofu is a bit of a challenge to grill. It's sticky, which can make it tricky in general to cook. Oil your grill and lightly rub your tofu with some oil as well. Even if it does stick, it'll still taste so good that you'll be burning your fingers trying to pick pieces off the grill for a taste test. (Guilty.) If you're not down with grilling, you can always just pan fry the tofu, which I expect I'll be doing six months from now, because this sandwich is definitely happening again, year round.
Maple Whiskey Barbecue Tofu Sandwiches
- ½ cup tomato paste
- ½ cup maple syrup
- ½ cup whiskey
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
- ¼ cup soy sauce
- 1 large garlic clove minced
- 1 tsp. smoked paprika
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- pinch cayenne pepper
- 2 lbs. extra firm tofu drained and pressed
- about 1 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 1 green bell pepper sliced into strips
- 1 medium onion sliced into strips
- 4-6 sandwich rolls or burger buns sliced open
Place tomato paste, maple syrup, whiskey, cider vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, smoked paprika, black pepper and cayenne into small saucepan over medium heat. Stir to blend and bring to a simmer. Lower heat and allow to simmer, uncovered, about 15 minutes, until thick.
While sauce simmers, oil grill and build a medium-high fire or heat gas grill to medium-high.
Slice tofu in half, width-wise, and then slice into thirds or fourths, thickness wise (alternatively cut tofu based on the shape of your rolls and desired number of servings). Rub tofu slabs and veggies lightly with oil.
Place tofu slabs, onions and peppers on grill. Cook tofu just until lightly charred, flip and cook just until lightly charred on opposite sides. Flip and brush with maple whiskey barbecue sauce. Cook about 2-3 more minutes, flip and brush the opposite sides with barbecue sauce, and cook about 2-3 minutes more, until nicely charred. Reserve excess sauce. Cook veggies until tender and charred.
Stuff rolls with tofu and veggies, and top with remaining barbecue sauce.