Spring Vegetable Stir-Fry with Tofu and Rice Noodles

spring stir-fry

Stir-frying is something that I do every single week. It's a great way to make yourself a meal when the only person you have to feed is you. I highly recommend it! And if you're a hearty eater like me, you won't have any leftovers.

Another reason why I love a stir-fry is that it's perfect for using up those odds and ends you may have in the fridge. You know what I'm talking about, those vegetables that need some attention. That stray carrot sitting in the bottom of the vegetables crisper drawer, or that leftover piece of bell pepper. So, go ahead and make use of them before they go bad!

For this specific stir-fry I'm focusing on spring vegetables. So along with the leftover carrot and red pepper, you'll find spring garlic (aka green garlic), spring onion, asparagus, and peas. But by no means are you limited to this selection of spring vegetables. Use whatever you like, for example snow peas, snap peas, broccoli, Napa cabbage, etc. This stir-fry is totally customizable.

Besides the wonderful variety of vegetables, I love that this recipe has rice noodles. They're perfect for absorbing the Southeast Asian-inspired sauce that includes fish sauce and soy sauce paired with aromatic lemongrass, ginger, and garlic. To get the most flavor out of them, chop the three ingredients as finely as you can, almost to a paste. For protein, the stir-fry includes my favorite smoked tofu. If you want to keep the recipe entirely vegetarian or vegan, feel free to skip the fish sauce.

Spring Vegetable Stir-Fry with Tofu and Rice Noodles

2 tablespoons plus 1 tablespoon coconut oil
10-ounce block smoked tofu, cut into cubes
4 ounces rice vermicelli noodles
2-inch piece carrot, thinly sliced diagonally
1 spring garlic, green stem cut into 2-inch segments and white bulb, finely chopped
1 spring onion, green stem cut into 2-inch segments and white bulb cut into large chunks
1/2 red pepper, sliced diagonally
6 spears asparagus, cut into 2-inch segments
1/3 cup shelled peas
2-inch piece ginger, finely chopped
4-inch piece lemongrass, finely chopped
2 to 3 teaspoons fish sauce
1 to 2 tablespoons soy sauce

Heat a wok over high heat and add 2 tablespoons coconut oil. Once oil is shimmering, add tofu and stir-fry until brown on all sides, about 5 minutes. Remove to a plate.

Meanwhile, add the rice noodles to a bowl, and pour over with boiling water. Let soak for about 10 minutes or according to package directions.

Refresh wok with remaining 1 tablespoon coconut oil. Add vegetables in the following order: carrot, onion whites and pale green stems (reserve the green), garlic stems, red pepper, asparagus, and peas; stirring in between each addition for 1 to 2 minutes before the next addition.

Add the finely chopped garlic, ginger, and lemongrass. Stir in quickly until you can smell the aroma, about 1 minute. Add the fish sauce and soy sauce while stirring the vegetables.

Add back the tofu and a few tablespoons of the starchy noodle water to help everything steam through. Add the reserved spring onion greens. Finally, add the soaked rice noodles. Stir until the noodles absorb some of the sauce. Serve immediately. Yield: 1 to 2 servings.


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