Recipes: Jodi’s Tofu Turkey with Stuffing and Gravy

Jodi Fogel is the High Falls Food Co-op’s general manager. She’s been with the co-op since almost the beginning… 30+ years! Jodi is a kind and steady force who has seen this little store through many wonderful times. She’s a treasure trove of warm co-op memories and stories which she is always happy to share. Jodi is also an active cook and long time vegetarian! So for her Thanksgiving meal, she’s turned tofu into tradition. She’s tried a lot of tofu turkey recipes through the years, but she’s held onto this one since 1986, making it annually for her family feast.  

Ingredients:

Tofu Turkey
5lbs tofu, medium firm

Homemade Poultry Seasoning (makes 1/2 cup)-
1/4 cup sage
2 tbsp marjoram
2 tbsp thyme
2 tbsp savory (or rosemary)
1 tbsp celery seed
1 tbsp black pepper

Herbed Wheat Stuffing (makes 5 cups)-
2 tbsp sesame oil
1 cup onions, diced
1 cup mushrooms, diced
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp homemade poultry seasoning
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 cup tamari
4 cups whole wheat bread cubes
1 to 2 chopped apples (skin removed)
1 cup chopped carrot

Basting Liquid
1/4 – 1/2 cup toasted sesame oil
2 tbsp – 1/4 cup tamari
*****a healthy splashy of orange juice

Mushroom Gravy (makes 8 cups)-
2 tbsp toasted sesame oil
2 onions, diced
6 cups mushrooms, sliced
1 cup whole wheat flour
6-7 cups water
3/4 cup tamari

Garnish
2 green peppers, halved
2 carrots

Instructions:

Mash tofu well. Line a colander (11 3/4” wide, including lip) with a single layer of moistened cheesecloth. Transfer tofu to colander. Press tofu to flatten and fold edges of cheesecloth over it. Place a dish or other flat object over the surface and weigh it down with a heavy object (about 5 lbs) to press liquid from tofu for one hour.

To prepare Homemade Poultry Seasoning, simply mix ingredients well.

To prepare Stuffing, heat oil and sauté onions, mushrooms, celery, and garlic. Sprinkle poultry seasoning over vegetables. Dissolve salt in tamari and add to pot. Stir, cover, and continue to cook until vegetables are done, about 5 minutes. Add bread crumbs and parsley, mix well.

Hollow out tofu to within one inch of colander. Pack in stuffing and cover with remaining tofu. Pat down to create a flat and firm surface.

Oil a baking sheet and flip filled tofu onto sheet so the flat surface faces down. Remove cheesecloth.

Mix basting liquid and brush tofu with it, then cover tofu with foil.

Bake at 400 degrees F for one hour.

Remove foil, baste, and return to oven bake uncovered until “skin” becomes a golden brown, about one more hour.

Baste again, half way through.

To prepare Gravy, heat oil and sauté onions and mushrooms. Mix flour with water. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring occasionally. For large amounts, increase ingredients proportionately, except water and tamari (though you will need less of them, about 3/4 the amount you would calculate, but keep the ratio the same between water and tamari.)

Using two spatulas, transfer tofu turkey to serving platter. Serve gravy on the side. Garnish with 2 carrots and two pepper halves if you’d like to simulate turkey legs and wings.