October 18, 2012

Scramble Tofu Breakfast Bahn Mi

by IsaChandra

Makes 4 sandwiches

There are many reasons to love Terry Hope Romero. Her shiny black hair, her Ewok style, and her huge heart among them. But even if she were like, totally evil, I would still love her for this Scramble Tofu Bahn Mi! I mean, who else would think of that? And who else would execute it so perfectly?  This is another recipe from her new book Vegan Eats World. Do yourself a favor and preorder this book. No food lover should be without it! OK, now I’ll let Terry take it away…

“This hearty bahn mi filling of golden scrambled tofu packed in a toasted baguette is too good to eat only for breakfasts, eat them up for casual weeknight meals too. You could always just use carrot and cilantro for garnish, but for really amazing sandwiches make the Daikon and Carrot Star Anise pickles!”


Recipe Notes

~ Making your own pickles might sounds like a P.I.T.A. but it’s actually quite simple and rewarding. Make the pickles on Saturday and have them ready and waiting for you at Sunday brunch.

~ If star anise isn’t already a common ingredient for you, it’s best to purchase them from a bulkbin at a spice store (like Penzey’s), asian market or health food store. You can purchase only the four you need for the pickles! Once, when I only needed a few, they weren’t heavy enough to register on the scale and the cashier just gave them to me for free. Hee hee.

For the tofu:

2 tablespoon vegetable oil

1/2 pound cremini mushrooms, cleaned and thinly sliced

3/4 cup thinly sliced shallots

4 scallions, white and green parts divided and sliced very thin

4 cloves garlic, peeled and mince

1 pound firm or extra firm tofu, drained

1/2 cup vegetable broth

3 tablespoons soy sauce (preferably Thai thin soy sauce ) or tamari

2 tablespoons lime juice

2 teaspoons ground coriander

1 teaspoon ground white pepper

1 teaspoon curry powder, any variety


For assembling:

4 six to eight inch crusty sandwich rolls or sliced from 2 baguettes

Vegan mayonnaise

Cilantro springs

Thin slices of ripe tomato

Paper thin slices of red radish or matchsticks of daikon or jicama

Asian garlic chili sauce (such as Sriracha or sambal oelek)


For the pickles:

1/2 pound daikon radish (about one slender 10 inch radish)

1/4 pound carrots (about 2 large carrots)

6 large green jalapeño or serrano chilies, stems removed

1 cup rice vinegar

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup kosher salt

1 teaspoon whole peppercorns, black or mixed color

4 whole star anise


Make the pickles ahead of time:

Peel daikon and carrots and slice into thin long matchsticks no thicker than 1/4 inch: I use a mandolin for this but you can take your time and use a chef’s knife. Or even better, use a Y-shaped julienne peeler. Slice the chilies in half, remove the seeds (or keep them in for really hot pickles), and slice into very thin slivers. Toss everything together and pack into a clean, dry 1 pint glass mason jar.

In a small saucepan bring to a gentle boil the vinegar, sugar, salt, peppercorns and star anise and boil for 2 minutes. Stir to dissolve the sugar and salt and then pour everything over the vegetables in the jar, including the star anise and peppercorns. Cover very tightly and chill for 30 minutes before using. Keep tightly covered and chilled when not using.

Make the sandwich:

Heat a wok or cast iron skillet until nearly smoking, then sauté mushrooms with 1 tablespoon of oil until tender and browned, about 4 to 6 minutes. Remove from wok, wipe down the surface and add remaining oil. Add the shallots and stir-fry until golden, about 4 minutes, then add white parts of scallion and garlic and stir fry for 1 minute. Crumble in tofu, add the mushrooms and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Whisk together vegetable broth, soy sauce, lime juice, coriander, white pepper, and curry powder and pour over tofu. Use a large wooden spoon or rubber spatula to stir fry tofu until all of the liquid has been absorbed and tofu is golden, about 8 to 10 minutes. Tofu should be moist, but not wet. Add the green tops of the scallions, fry for another minute and remove from the heat.

Slice rolls in half and toast if desired. Spread insides with mayo and distribute the tofu evenly on the sandwiches. Top each sandwich with cilantro, tomato, radish, chili sauce, and daikon pickles if using. Eat immediately but over a plate…these are messy goodness.

  • October 18, 2012 at 11:01 pm: Brittany

    This looks ridiculously good. I love the flavors.

  • October 18, 2012 at 11:18 pm: Michelle

    Consider my mind blown! Can’t wait for this book…

  • October 19, 2012 at 1:08 am: AshYTim

    I pre-ordered it yesterday. So excited! I can hardly stand to wait!

  • October 19, 2012 at 1:20 am: Dawn (Vegan Fazool)

    I love vegan versions of Bahn Mi sandwiches! I’ve got some daikon and some carrots from my CSA this week, and I think I’ve got a few pint jars left, so, it’s lookin’ good for pickle makin’ on the homestead!


  • October 19, 2012 at 2:51 pm: KZCakes

    This was my favorite recipe I tested for this book. I devoured it even before taking a picture. The pickles are also key. Mmm

  • October 26, 2012 at 5:16 am: Maris

    I cannot wait to get this book!!

  • November 1, 2012 at 8:46 pm: Hannah

    I just tried the pickle recipe to go along with a different (non-breakfast) banh mi recipe I like and they were delicious! I bought a julienne peeler just for the recipe but it’s something I can see myself using for other recipes and I am very excited about it. The only change I made was to add 1 cup of water to the liquid mixture and then bringing it to a boil. Other pickle recipes I’ve seen use equal parts vinegar and water. They still “pickled” and were tasty.

  • November 2, 2012 at 1:14 am: Sheila

    Delicious. The pickles were easy, took the advice to make them the day before. Otherwise would have been way too much for a weeknight. Required a purchase of a mandoline but pretty cheap and i think the ability to julienne may change my whole take on salads, so def worth the 15$ at crate&barrel! Really lovely mix of favors–have to admit I doubted at first but it was great.

  • November 3, 2012 at 7:59 pm: Jennifer

    Hi IsaChandra,

    This looks like a delicious veggie sandwich. Maybe this one will convert my tuna-sandwich loving boyfriend. But what is Kosher salt en why is ‘normal’ salt not suitable for vegans or Jews?

  • December 4, 2012 at 12:30 pm: Kate

    I just recently heard about bahn mi sandwiches! So excited to try this! Thanks for sharing!

  • December 6, 2012 at 12:36 am: Deb

    My pickles were not so tasty. Super salty with a funny aftertaste. I wonder if adding water would have helped. I love pickles and I love salt but this was over the top. I’ll try again to see if I made a mistake somewhere.

  • December 16, 2012 at 4:22 am: Marian

    Great lazy Sunday breakfast, pickles were a hit and a new addition to just about every meal from now on. Didn’t have a mandolin, but one daikon and one large carrot don’t take that long to slice up. Delicious!

  • January 21, 2013 at 9:58 pm: Saga@ahungryswedeinlondon

    I’m trying a month as a vegan and love banh mi so had to try this! Though ended up making it with red lentils instead of tofu, and in a wrap, but hey, the inspiration was from your lovely website :) The recipe for pickled vegetables is the best one I tried so far

  • November 9, 2013 at 8:33 am: Jess

    WOW. I just made this tonight and it is one of the best things I have ever cooked!!! Epic! So satisfying to put work into a recipe and have it come out amazing! THANK YOU for this recipe!!! I took some photos of how it turned out and posted it to Instagram, feel free to just search the hashtag of your own names of you can find me at 77_cool_J. Looking forward to trying more great recipes from you!

  • May 24, 2014 at 12:52 pm: Cheri

    Just made this and was blown away. I made the pickles last night. Instead of bahn mi style, i went burrito style, but did everything else the same. This dish is not for the faint of flavor! It is packed to the rafters with edgy flavors. Since ditching animal ive found my tastebuds appear more sensitive and the flavors i experience on a daily basis are mindblowing. You need to make this. As long as you do your mis en place it comes together very fast.

  • November 4, 2015 at 6:25 pm: Steff