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Buttermilk Fried Tofu with Smoky Collard Greens
“Dipping tofu in buttermilk makes the coating stick for a crispy pan-fried tofu, reminiscent of fried chicken. Spicing up the collards with paprika coats them with smoky flavor while keeping this dish vegetarian. And this quick, easy and healthy dinner comes together in just 25 minutes, so it's great for busy weeknights.”
6 tablespoons grapeseed oil or canola oil, divided
1 (1 pound) package chopped collards
½ cup water
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
¾ teaspoon salt, divided
1 (14 to 16 ounce) package extra-firm tofu, drained
1 cup buttermilk
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon onion powder
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 cup whole-wheat panko
Hot (spicy) honey for serving
1Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add collards and water; cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and wilted, about 8 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vinegar, paprika and ½ teaspoon salt. Cover to keep warm.
2Meanwhile, cut tofu crosswise into 8 equal pieces. Blot with paper towels to remove excess water. Whisk buttermilk, garlic powder, onion powder and cayenne in a 7-by-11-inch baking dish. Add the tofu and turn to coat. Let stand, turning once, for 5 minutes.
3Place panko on a plate. Dredge the tofu in the panko, coating both sides.
4Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the tofu and cook until brown and crispy on one side, 4 to 5 minutes. Turn the tofu over and drizzle in the remaining 2 tablespoons oil. Cook until browned on the other side, about 4 minutes more.
5Sprinkle the tofu with the remaining ¼ teaspoon salt and serve with the collards and hot honey, if desired.