Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Vegan French Onion Soup with Mediterranean Baked Tofu Sandwiches


I love French Onion Soup, I mean really really love it. As I slowly work my way into the depths of becoming a vegg, I think that figuring out this dish will be key to my survival. I invited my David, newly vegetarian, to come over and watch me fuddle my way through creating a robust beefy broth without the bovine. To add a bit o' protein to the dinner, I decided to make a baked tofu sandwich. Wow. I mean WOW. The sandwich was one of the best things I've ever made, almost as good as the French Onion soup.


After searching the internet, extensively, looking for ways to create beefy flavor with common ingredients I found my solution. Vegemite. So for the stock I went with my good ol' standby Better Than Bouillon Vegetable and added to it 2 teaspoons of Vegemite.


6 large yellow onions thinly sliced
(I cried a ton slicing onions. Seriously how to the pros do it? I had to take several breaks. My poor roommate was gassed out of the living room it was soo bad. Ahhh but worth every tear.)
2 cloves of garlic chopped
6 cups of veg stock
1/2 cup of wine (I went with $3CabSav)
2 teaspoons of Vegemite (dissolved in stock)
1 bay leaf
The leaves of 3 twigs of thyme
1/4 tsp sugar
Olive oil
Salt and Pepper
(optional: sliced french bread and swiss cheese slices or vegan swiss)

1. Saute the sliced onions over medium high heat in a bit of olive oil. This is going to take some time. Just plug in the iPod and jam out as you stir. I used some of this time to prep the marinade for the tofu.

2. After about 10 min add the sugar and continue sauteing until the onions turn brown. Patience folks. Wash some dishes. Slice your bread. Preheat the oven for the tofu.

3. Once the onions are golden brown add the garlic and saute for a minute.

4. Add the wine, broth, bay leaf, and thyme. Deglaze the pan a bit to get the golden flavor into your soup.

5. Cover and simmer for 30min.

6. Uncover. Smell that!!!! Remove the bay leaf and serve the soup. Here is where I added the classic slice of french bread and a slice of swiss cheese. I put the bowls in the oven for a few minutes until the cheese had melted. Careful removing them from the oven, as they get wicked hot. Thankfully, my brother and sister-in-law bought me the OveGlove for Christmas.

7. Eat!

The Sandwich

These sandwiches were easy, healthy and completely delicious. I had baked tofu for the Satay a few weeks ago and wanted to try making a Mediterranean version to use in sandwiches or to replace chicken.


1/4 cup balsamic
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine
2 cloves of garlic
handful of Italian parsley
2 tsp of thyme
Salt and pepper
1 Tbs Dijon
1 pkg firm tofu
1 tsp sugar
handful of baby greens

Preheat ya' oven at 350

1. Add the vinegars, oil, wine, garlic, parsley, thyme, salt and pepper to your food processor and give it a whirrr. Transfer the mixture to a bowl

2. Cut the tofu into 1/2" slices of the small side. Add the slices to the marinade and let sit for 30 min or longer.

3. Place the tofu slices on a baking sheet and bake until each side is golden.

4. Take the marinade and transfer to a small saucepan. Add mustard and sugar.

5. Simmer until the sauce has thickened and reduced in half. Transfer to bowl and stick in the freezer to cool.

6. On slices of french bread, spread a thin layer of vegenaise, then a thin layer of tapenade. Add a layer of baby greens and place the tofu steaks on top. Drizzle the sauce over the tofu and serve.


Kim - Easy French Food said...

Your recipe looks like a great adaptation. No reason that it needs to be beefy after all. It's the onions that are the stars. Another ingredient to try is just a spalsh of Cognac - I like it that way anyway.

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