Quickies Cocktail Challenge
 Update : I am pleased to announce that we've now received  16  great entries! Thank you very much and please, keep them coming guys. Send in as many entries as you like,  just remember to get them in by midnight of September 27 2010 (EST)  - we're looking forward to shouting out the winner and showcasing a fantastic line up of entries on September 28 2010 (EST)  !! What's your motivation? A gorgeous cookbook! (take a detailed peek here) And now for today's post....

I'd call myself a pretty contented person but there are always things a girl could use, if you know what I mean. A leisurely exploration of a souk in Marrakech, for instance, a diving vacation in the Seychelles, or classic and cult sitcoms in unending syndication.

Dinner at The Fat Duck or a bottle of Chateau Petrus would be nice too. Fortunately my desires aren't always so rarefied, and there are simple things that still make me weak in the knees.

Deep fried tofu every day, without consequence.

Owning every vintage and antique teacup in existence, or at least, trying to.

A pretty pet frog.

photo from Vogue Hommes International

Good bones, oh my...... I mean, a really comfy couch ;)

Linguine with everything I like..... cooked by someone else, while I buff my nails.

Told you, I'm a simple girl. Here's how it's done. And in case you later find yourself wondering, mustard greens look like this:

Linguine with Crispy Tofu and Vegetables

Prep 15 mins      Cook 20 mins       Serves 2

150g (about 5 ozs) dried linguine
2 small squares firm tofu, each cut into two rectangles
3 cloves garlic, peel and chop
2 mustard green stalks, slice thinly on the diagonal
5 ears fresh baby corn, slice thinly
5 garlic scapes, slice thinly on the diagonal
A large handful beech mushrooms, rinse lightly and drain
2 Tbsp light soy sauce
Sea salt to taste
1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
A generous pinch red pepper flakes


Fill a large pot of water and bring to the boil. Cook the linquine as you normally would.

About  5 minutes before linguine is done ( I like it al dente) heat about 2 cm (1 in) of oil in a  pan and fry the tofu rectangles until lightly crisp. Remove from pan and drain. Allow to cool then cut each rectangle across into 6 or so slices. Set aside.

Remove most of the oil in the pan, leaving behind about 3 tablespoons. Reheat pan and when hot, add the garlic and mustard green stalks to the pan and stir around for about a minute.

Next add the corn and garlic scapes and toss around for another minute. Add the mushrooms and stir through. Remove linguine from the pot and add to the pan of vegetables, along with about 1/4  cup of the pasta boiling water. Turn up the heat high and toss everything together.

Season to taste with soy sauce and salt and stir to combine. Turn off heat and plate. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and red pepper flakes and serve immediately. Eat with a finely boned companion, on a very comfy couch.