janet @ the taste space

Jamaican Tofu Chowder with Collards

In Mains (Vegetarian) on January 20, 2012 at 6:09 AM

There are very few purchased spice blends in our house.

I made my own dukkah and za’atar. Rob made panch phoran to quickly whip up this Cauliflower Dal.

I used to make my own garam masala until I discovered Arvinda’s garam masala, which is what Rob had in his kitchen. It tastes really good so we’ve stuck with it until our stash runs out.

Just as I have been averse to dishes named curry, I have been avoiding dishes calling for “curry powder”. I will typically substitute garam masala.

But this time was different. I forged ahead and tried some higher quality Madras curry powder. I knew that even if I hated it, there was a good chance Rob would adore this – a coconut curry is definitely up his alley! Of course, I wouldn’t be sharing the recipe here if I didn’t love it as well. 😉

While there is definitely an Indian influence to this curry, this is a Jamaican curry that I spotted in Big Vegan. Lime-marinaded tofu chunks, sweet potatoes and carrots are combined with collards in a coconut-curry sauce spiced with thyme.  Caribbean dishes can be quite spicy, but I still used 1 tbsp of curry powder. The coconut milk helps to tame the heat. However, I omitted the Serrano pepper in lieu of my favoured Aleppo chili flakes.

Even though this wasn’t from Terry’s new cookbook we’re testing, we’ve started to rate all our meals as “love”, “really like”, “like”, “just ok”, “not good” as per our cookbook testing guidelines. As Rob put it: On the love-like scale, I give this a love. I gave it a really like, and let Rob polish off the rest of the leftovers. There are bigger battles to win! 😉

Jamaican Tofu Chowder with Collards

This is my submission to Deb for this week’s Souper Sundays, to this week’s Weekend Wellness, to this month’s citrus love blog hop and to My Kitchen, My World for Jamaica.

Jamaican Tofu Chowder with Collards

10 oz super firm tofu, pressed and cut in 1 cm
1 tbsp fresh lime juice
2 tsp soy sauce
2 tsp coconut oil
3 green onions, chopped (50g)
1/2 tsp Aleppo chili flakes
1 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1lb sweet potato, cubed
1 carrot, chopped
1 tbsp mild curry powder (we used Madras, which is not always so mild)
2 large bay leaves
3 cups vegetable broth
14oz (lite) coconut milk
3 cups chopped collard greens (150g, prepped, half a bunch)
salt, to taste
rice, to serve

1. Mix together tofu with the lime juice and soy sauce and set aside.

2. In a large pot over medium pot, heat the oil. Add the green onions, chili flakes, thyme and garlic. Cook until fragrant, around 2-3 minutes.

3. Add the sweet potatoes, carrot, curry powder and bay leaves and stir over medium heat until the curry powder becomes fragrant. Deglaze the pot with the broth and coconut milk and bring to a boil while covered. Once boiling, uncover and simmer for 10 minutes, or until the sweet potatoes are tender.

4. Stir in the collards and tofu with its marinade, and simmer for a further 10 minutes until the leaves are soft and bright green. Season with salt and pepper and serve with rice.

Serves 6.

  1. Ohhhh… I love the idea of tofu chowder. I just got back from a trip to the NE coast and there was clam chowder (which I do not eat) EVERYWHERE. Finally a chowder for me. 🙂

    P.S. I finally made your Dal Palak and posted about it today. It was delicious – thank you for the recipe!


    Can’t wait to try it. 🙂

  3. There’s something in Madras curry powder that I don’t like, either. I *think* it’s star anise but am not yet quite sure. Nevertheless, there are hundreds if not thousands of wonderful curry spice recipes out there. I’ve just begun to explore them myself, and have had wonderful luck with Jamaican and Sri Lankan-type curry powders. And then of course there’s my “special” garam masala that I made on Wednesday and that turned out kind of wonderfully strange because I had switched cardamom and coriander in my supposedly alphabetized spice racks…I can hardly wait until I go fully senile and lose track of the alphabet altogether.

    Your dish would get a “love” from me as well! What the heck is it about stews? I love them. I pretty much love them all. If I ever opened a restaurant, it would be, like, a stew restaurant, with all kinds of dishes like this one. With dumplings, over rice, sopped up with bread, with a pastry crust or a scoop of mashed potatoes or just all by themselves…waiting for my own lentil-kabocha-eggplant stew to simmer to perfection as I type but wishing too that it had a little coconut milk…

  4. This is sure to be a love on my scale as well! Spice and coconut and sweet potatoes…what more could a girl ask for?

  5. Just came across this recipe and it looks great :). I think I would really like to make this. Only problem is I have no collards, so do you think I could try subbing leeks perhaps?

  6. Mmm… I think this has all of my favorite ingredients in it. Love all the color too. Thanks for sharing it with Souper Sundays. 😉

  7. I like that way of rating dishes, maybe I’ll have to adopt that. I always write comments on the things I make in cookbooks, but it’s more like “loooove make again” or “just okay, could eat again”. Anyway, I can see why you guys loved this. 🙂 Though it doesn’t seem Jamaican, not that I know what Jamaican food is at all.

  8. I love curries and ones with coconut milk in especially, so I reckon I’d be with Rob in giving this a ‘love’

  9. […] The Taste Space shared Jamaican Tofu Chowder with Collards […]

  10. I’m with Rob! Love love love! Ate it as soup, no rice or quinoa. Maybe next time will have some corn bread with it. So rich and flavorful. I did use full fat coconut milk since that was what I had.

    Only modification: don’t have Aleppo—just used regular red pepper (1 t—we like stuff spicy). I see that most of your recipes use Aleppo, so may break down and buy it soon).

    • Hey Ellen, Thanks for letting me know how it turned out. It really makes my day when I get such positive feedback! I love Aleppo but in no way is it an essential ingredient. It just happens to be a chili flake that is more flavourful than spicy, which is perfect for me. I always say I use Aleppo because it is half-strength for spiciness – so to keep the mild flavour, one would need to use half as much of the “normal” chili flakes. Although I know most people would want more spice, anyhow. 😉

  11. […] Creamy Spinach and White Bean Dip – Sunshine Carrot Tofu Scramble with Spinach – Rasta Pasta – Jamaican Tofu Chowder with Collards – Japanese Okonomiyaki Veggie Pancake – Seitan Burgundy Stew with […]

  12. […] greens as much as me (like Rob), and may be more likely to add collard greens to stir fries or soups instead. When I cooked my chickpea-collard roulade, though, I was aghast at how creamy collard […]

  13. […] This vegan chowder recipe from Janet has been on my Soup Pinterest board for ever and I really want to try it now that it’s getting cooler. […]

  14. ALWAYS looking for Jamaican Vegan Recipes! This is great!
    I participated with two posts today for Healthy Vegan Friday!

  15. Just spotted this on the Veggie Nook…this looks fantastic!!

  16. […] powder into Indian curries, bean and quinoa skillets, and couscous pilaf, I have also added it to tofu chowders, sweet potato hummus, balsamic roasted veggies, kabocha squash flatbread, curried-mustard […]

  17. I made this last night! Really enjoyed it, but I made 3X as much of the soy/lime marinade (I also used more than 10 oz of tofu) and felt like that really helped the flavor. I was using low sodium veggie broth and low sodium soy sauce, though, so maybe I could have achieved the same thing by adding more salt. Thanks so much for sharing this recipe!

  18. […] Jamaican Tofu Chowder with Collards by The Taste Space […]

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