Apr 072014

Even though I’m not getting married for a little while (aka 14 months), obviously I am already starting to dream about honeymoon destinations. One of the top contenders right now is Southeast Asia–something like Thailand or Vietnam. Then, of course, I got distracted from the honeymoon planning, and started thinking about Thai and Vietanamese food (this is typical, as most trains of thought end in food for me). So I decided on a whim yesterday to make a veggie version of an amazing Vietnamese Sandwich- Banh Mi. If you’ve never tried it or even heard of it before, you’re welcome.
I love this sandwich for a few reasons. One, it’s a sandwich, what’s not to love? Two, it has the best mix of flavors and textures–spicy jalapeno, herbal cilantro, crisp pickled veggies, refreshing cucumber, and a creamy (and hopefully spicy) sauce. OK I went a little overboard on the adjectives there, but this sandwich deserves it. Although the sandwich most typically is made with pork, I use a lemongrass marinated tofu. Like any recipe that has several components, it does take a little bit of time, organization, and multitasking to make it happen.
Nutritional Highlights: This recipe is totally vegan but I would be shocked if meat eaters didn’t love it too. Tofu is a great source of protein and calcium and is a tasty way to make a meatless sandwich feel hearty. The toppings here are super healthy- cucumber, pickled carrots/onions/radish, cilantro, and jalapeno are the ones I used. Two of the healthiest swaps I made here are instead of using mayo, I made a quick avocado-sriracha sauce which was so much tastier. As for bread, go with a multigrain baguette or bread, or even make it a banh mi bowl if you’re not into the bread.
Still looks pretty good, huh?
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Lemongrass Tofu Banh Mi with Avocado-Sriracha “Mayo” and lotsa toppings
adapted from Cooking Light
makes 4 sandwiches
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

What’s in it…
For the tofu:

  • 1 (14-ounce) package water-packed extra-firm tofu, drained
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemongrass (1 stalk with outer layer peeled off and finely minced)
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons lower-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil

For the pickled veggies:

  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cups matchstick-cut carrot
  • 1 cups matchstick-cut peeled daikon radish (these look like big white carrots if you are like me and have never seen one!)
  • optional: 1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion –  this is not traditionally in banh mi but I had one in the fridge so why not

For the avocado-sriracha “mayo”

  • 1 very ripe avocado
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Juice from 1 lime
  • 2 tablespoons sriracha (or more)


  • 1 thinly sliced english cucumber
  • 2 thinly sliced jalapenos
  • 1/2 cup cilantro leaves
  • Multigrain Baguette, toasted (or a bed of lettuce if you’re going the salad route)

How to make it…
1. Preheat oven to 425. Cut tofu crosswise into 8 thin slices. Arrange tofu on several layers of paper towels. Cover with additional paper towels; top with a cast-iron skillet or other heavy pan. Let stand 15 minutes. Remove tofu from paper towels.

2. Combine lemongrass, water, soy sauce, garlic, and 1 teaspoon sesame oil in a 13 x 9-inch glass or ceramic baking dish. Arrange tofu slices in a single layer in soy mixture. Let stand for 15 minutes or longer, turning once.

3. While tofu marinates, make the pickle.  Combine vinegar, water, salt, and sugar in a medium bowl, stirring until sugar and salt dissolve. Add carrot, radish, and red onion; toss well. Let stand for 30 minutes or more, stirring occasionally. Drain excess liquid. You can make these a day in advance if you’d like.

4. Spray a small baking sheet well with oil spray (be sure to do this or tofu may stick). Lay tofu in even layer–don’t worry if some of the marinade/lemongrass is left in your marinading dish. Roast tofu for about 30 minutes, turning after 15 minutes. Tofu should be brown and crisp–if you think they need a little more browning, you can turn on your broiler for a few minutes to finish it off.

5. While tofu is roasting and pickles are pickling, prepare the avocado-sriracha “mayo” by mashing the avocado well and mixing all the ingredients.

6. Get your bread and toppings ready by toasting bread, slicing cucumber, jalapeno, and picking off cilantro leaves.

7.  Now make the magic happen–slather baguette with avocado-sriracha mayo, top with cucumber slices, roasted lemongrass tofu, pickled veggies, and a few jalapeno slices and cilantro leaves.  Enjoy!

Meet my new favorite sandwich.

  9 Responses to “Lemongrass Tofu Banh Mi”

  1. This looks absolutely delicious! Avocado sriracha mayo, brilliant!
    I would definitely recommend Thailand, it’s one of my fav spots I’ve traveled to. I was enamoured by Phi Phi Island and never wanted to leave!

    • I know…Avocado and Sriracha is an amazing combo! Thanks for reading and for the Thailand recommendation!!

  2. These are gorgeous! I love banh mi – I had it for breakfast quite a few times in Vietnam :)

    If you’re looking at Vietnam for your honeymoon, I highly recommend that you make a visit to Hoi An; it’s an old, sleepy coastal town with amazing food and kind, patient locals. I stayed in Sunrise resort, which is just a taxi ride from the city center, and it was AMAZING! That being said, all of Vietnam was amazing, haha.

  3. […] Marissa / Via getoffyourtushandcook.com […]

  4. […] Oh before I forget here is this link to this awesome sandwich Lemongrass Tofu Banh Mi […]

  5. […] Get the recipe from Get Off Your Tush and Cook […]

  6. […] Sauce with Penne: http://www.godairyfree.org/recipes/c…ee-vodka-sauce Lemongrass Tofu Banh Mi: http://getoffyourtushandcook.com/201…u-banh-mi.html Vegan Avocado Chocolate Muffins with Cacao Nibs: […]

  7. […] Marissa / Via getoffyourtushandcook.com […]

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>