This season is such a great time for new cookbooks, whether it’s for gifts during the holidays or with New Year’s resolutions to start making more home-cooked meals. I personally love looking through cookbooks any time of the year, there are just so many to choose from! My favorite cookbooks not only have high-quality recipes, but also stunning photos and easy-to-follow directions. Which is why I was so excited when I received Ilene Godofsky Moreno’s cookbook, The Colorful Kitchen! Follow along to learn a little more about this book, and keep scrolling for a recipe for a vegan Reuben sandwich that I can’t get enough of lately. Continue reading
Since I had been following Ilene’s blog for a while, I couldn’t wait to finally get my hands on this book. Everything from the cover to the outer edges of the pages (which form a rainbow in color), to the wholesome plant-based recipes inside inspires me to get more creative with new and vibrant dishes. Ilene’s cookbook is a reminder that the food we eat should be beautiful, fun, nourishing, and something to share with the people we care about. I’m excited to announce that I’ll be doing a giveaway over on my Instagram on December 12th for a copy of The Colorful Kitchen Cookbook (which is also when the cookbook comes out), but you can always pre-order (or purchase if you’re reading this after the 12th) as a gift to yourself or your loved ones.
As for the recipe, when making this Reuben-ish I realized I don’t make sandwiches as often as I’d like to. They’re super easy to throw together and a great way to combine a lot of ingredients that you likely already have on hand. I feel like vegan Reuben sandwiches in particular are kinda tricky to find, so as a sauerkraut and pickle lover I was so happy to stumble upon this recipe in The Colorful Kitchen Cookbook! It did take a little longer than it does to assemble a standard sandwich, but the extra steps are well worth it. I also really love the baked tofu recipe and Thousand Island dressing (both included below as well as in the cookbook), since I prefer to make my own ingredients as much as possible. The components all balance each other really nicely to make a tasty and hearty sandwich overall. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do!
TOTAL TIME: 15 MINUTES MAKES: 4 SANDWICHES
I spent a good chunk of my childhood in Jewish-style delis in New York and South Florida (the unofficial Jewish grandparent headquarters) noshing on bagels and lox, tuna melts, and black-and- white cookies. This sandwich is inspired by a favorite I used to order with my bubbe (a.k.a. my gran).
- 8 slices of bread
- 1 batch Thousand Island Dressing (see below)
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 handful mixed greens
- 1 batch Baked Tofu (see below), sliced
- ¼–½ cup sauerkraut
- 1 avocado, sliced
- ¼ cup sliced pickles
- Spread 4 slices of the bread with the Thousand Island Dressing. Spread the mustard on the other 4 slices.
- To assemble the sandwiches, layer the greens, Baked Tofu, sauerkraut, avocado, and pickles on 4 of the slices of bread. Top with the other 4 bread slices. Grill the sandwiches in a panini press* and enjoy warm.
NOTE: I don’t actually have a panini press, so I use an old electric grill that I rescued from my uncle’s basement. You can also press the sandwich on the stove by heating it in a pan and placing something heavy (like another pan) on top.
- 1 (14-ounce) package firm tofu
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon tamari
- 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
- ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder
- ⅛ teaspoon onion powder
- Cut the tofu into ½- to 1-inch slices. On a cutting board, layer the slices of tofu between paper towels or clean dishcloths. Place a heavy item (a teakettle filled with water works great) on top (or use a tofu press if you’ve got one). Let the tofu sit for at least 30 minutes (or overnight in the refrigerator for extra-amazing texture). This will remove the excess water from the tofu and give it a better texture.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Lightly grease a baking sheet.
- To prepare the marinade, in a medium bowl, stir together the olive oil, tamari, rice vinegar, garlic powder, and onion powder. Leave the tofu as slices or cut it into cubes. Toss the tofu with the marinade in the bowl and let it soak for 5 minutes.
- Spread the tofu out on the baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes, then flip and bake for another 10–15 minutes (depending on the size of the pieces), until the desired crispiness is reached. Enjoy the tofu right away or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
- ¼ cup vegan mayo
- 1 tablespoon ketchup
- 1 teaspoon pickle brine
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup
- ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder
- Stir all the ingredients together in a small bowl until smooth. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
A huge thank you to Ilene and BenBella Books for letting me feature this fantastic cookbook (including this wonderful Reuben recipe) on my blog. I’d love to hear in the comments below what kinds of colorful dishes you’d like to try out next!