Coconut Cabbage and Tofu With Lemongrass and Ginger

Photo by Joseph De Leo, Food Styling by Anna Stockwell

For a vegetarian riff on the Indonesian dish rendang, we roasted thick wedges of cabbage, carrots, and tofu in a spiced coconut milk sauce until they're wonderfully softened and caramelized. Puréeing the coconut milk with chopped lemongrass, fresh ginger, garlic, and spices in a blender ensures that the tougher aromatics are completely incorporated to form a smooth sauce.

Yield
4 servings
Active Time
15 minutes
Total Time
1 hour

Ingredients

    • 1 (14.5-oz.) can coconut milk
    • 1 lemongrass stalk, top half trimmed, tough outer layers removed, thinly sliced
    • 4 garlic cloves
    • 1 2" piece ginger, peeled, coarsely chopped
    • 1 Tbsp. kosher salt
    • 1 Tbsp. sugar
    • 1 tsp. ground turmeric
    • 1/2 tsp. ground coriander
    • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
    • 1 (14-oz.) block firm or extra-firm tofu, drained
    • 1 small or 1/2 large head of cabbage (about 1 1/2 lb.), cut into 2" wedges through core
    • 3 large carrots (about 1 lb.), peeled, cut into 2" segments
    • Toasted coconut chips, steamed rice, and lime wedges (for serving; optional)

Preparation

    1. Place a rack in top third of oven; preheat to 425°F. Purée coconut milk, lemongrass, garlic, ginger, salt, sugar, turmeric, coriander, and cayenne in a blender until smooth.
    2. Squeeze tofu over a medium bowl or sink with your hands, gently at first, then more firmly to expel as much water as possible (like squeezing out a big sponge). Don’t worry if it starts to crack apart. When no more liquid comes out, tear tofu into 2" pieces; discard liquid. Place in a shallow 13×9" baking dish. Add cabbage and carrots, arrange in an even layer, and pour sauce over.
    3. Bake, basting the vegetables and tofu halfway through, until carrots are fork-tender, most of the liquid is evaporated, and the top is golden brown and lightly charred in places, 40–45 minutes. Let cool 5 minutes.
    4. Top with coconut chips (if using). Serve with rice and lime wedges alongside (if using).

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