Do not touch

I have the hardest time leaving my food alone while it’s cooking. Maybe it’s from watching too much Iron Chef.

For some reason, when I put something in a hot pan, I feel the urge to wave the pan around: a circular flourish, flames kissing the bottom of the skillet as I toss its beautifully-browned contents (exotic secret ingredients!) into the air and then effortlessly catch them again.

But of course, I’m no Iron Chef. And there are no flames leaping from my electric stove. And I don’t cook with exotic secret ingredients. And lord knows I cannot catch.

It’s kind of funny how the urge to stir and toss strikes when it’s exactly the opposite that’s needed. Tonight, as I hovered over a pan of cubed tofu, I had to constantly remind myself: Do not touch. Do not move that food. No spatula. No touch, no touch, no touchy touch touch.

The reward was well worth a little patience: perfectly browned cubes that had no problem standing up to a hearty curry sauce.

Recipe: Curry Noodles with Tofu [Adapted from a Food & Wine recipe for Vegetarian Red Curry Noodles, which I would argue is not actually vegetarian because it contains fish sauce…not that I really care, but DERP, F&W, get it right!]

Using pre-crushed garlic, ginger and lemongrass, this dish came together very quickly and was bursting with flavor: more like a spicy stir-fry than a traditional soupy curry.

A crisp white always goes well with spicy food:

This Cottesbrook 2010 Sauvignon Blanc was a good match. Tropical flavors dominated – pineapple, grapefruit, guava – which played nicely with my coconut-based dinner. Very much on the sweeter side of the scale, with a little hint of earthy gravel, and really none of the spicy green pepper that you often get from an SB.

Bottom line: If you don’t mind a sweeter/fruit-forward wine, then get it! (Purchased at Total Wine, $10)

Weather weirdness: today, it was eighty-something degrees. Tomorrow, it will be forty-something degrees.

HEY WEATHER, KNOCK IT OFF.  I don’t need to get sick two weeks before my marathon….

10 responses to “Do not touch

  1. That sounds great!
    I’ve recently had some really good Red Fish Curry from a local restaurant. I would love to try this at home!
    And I didn’t know that SB goes well with spicy food… SB is one of my fave white wines. I’m less exclusive with my reds, I love them all, but whites are usually a hit or miss with me.
    I’m not very wine savvy but it looks like I can learn a lot from your blog =)

    • I’m not particularly savvy either! I’ve just learned what I like over the last few years. And I like a sweet, easy to drink wine with spicy stuff. :)

  2. That dinner looks awesome! Um, minus the fish sauce unless someone else is doing the cooking…I’m still lame and can’t get past the smell.

  3. I really need to try making this tofu stuff..Ive never really had it but it looks so good all browned up like that

  4. I heard an interview on NPR once with the woman who plays the nutritional anthropologist on Good Eats, and her #1 recommendation for cooking was DO NOT TOUCH THE CHICKEN. It was hilarious.

  5. I tend to do that when people are watching. Like I’m some big deal for cooking eggs or something.

    Clearly I need attention at all times.

  6. Looking to try this recipe !

  7. That dish looks amazing! I never have any luck with tofu — it always looks so good (your dinner as a case in point) and when I try to replicate it — the tofu just winds up being gross :(

  8. ha, that’s probably why my tofu never comes out correctly! I feel the need to push it around the pan and flip the pieces a million times. Sigh. Love, LOVE curry tofu.

  9. I was inspired to buy some fish sauce after I read your post about how that jar exploded all over the kitchen…and I still haven’t used it. But this sounds like something I could handle. Sans the wine, of course. For now. (Fuck.)