Firing Up the Grill for the Fourth? Think Honey.

Honey is a popular ingredient for grilling saucesImage Courtesy of the National Honey Board

Just in time for the holiday, the Honey Board has a few recipes to recommend — for the grill. Honey is a pretty common ingredient for marinades and sauces. These recipes capture that sweet-spicy combination of flavors I personally love.

Before you go for the tongs, the Honey Board has a few pointers on why this food is sustainable AND an eco-friendly choice:

  • Honey is an all-natural food that leaves a small eco-footprint.
  • Purchasing local honey encourages growth of the local economy and reduces production waste.
  • Many farmers have hives on their land, in part because bees are responsible for one out of every three bites we consume.
  • If it weren’t for honey bees, we would suffer from a limited supply of oranges, apples, blueberries, cucumbers and strawberries.

Recipes for your holiday cook out include Grilled Tofu Kabobs with a Honey-Chipotle Glaze.

Grilled Tofu Kabobs
Chipotle Marinade:
1 cup vegetable broth
1 clove garlic, minced
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup tamari soy sauce
1 chipotle en adobo, minced
1 1/2 tablespoons adobo sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons granulated onion powder
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon fresh chopped cilantro

Tofu Kabobs:
2 14-oz. pkgs. extra-firm tofu
3 medium zucchini, cut into 1-inch circles
1 medium red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch chunks
1 medium red onion, cut into 1-inch wedges
12 cherry tomatoes
1 cup pineapple cubes

To make Chipotle Marinade: Whisk together broth, garlic, honey, soy sauce, and chipotle and adobo sauce in 2-cup liquid measuring cup. Add onion powder, mustard and cilantro; mix well.

To make Tofu Kabobs: Slice each block of tofu in half horizontally, and, in cross-hatch pattern, make two slices vertically and two slices horizontally for total of 36 tofu cubes. Place tofu in nonreactive 9×13-inch baking dish. Pour marinade over tofu, cover and refrigerate for 1 to 24 hours.

Set and light fire using coals or mesquite about 30 minutes before cooking time. Soak bamboo skewers in hot water for 20 minutes. Alternating ingredients, thread tofu, vegetables and pineapple cubes on skewers. Place kabobs over hot coals on well-oiled grill rack. Cook about 10 minutes, or until done, turning once and taking care that vegetables don’t burn.

Grilled Tofu and Sautéed Asian Greens
1 (14-oz) block firm tofu, drained
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 tablespoon Asian sesame oil
1/3 cup honey
1 tablespoon peeled, finely grated, fresh ginger
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 teaspoon Tabasco or dried hot red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 (5-oz) bags Asian greens or baby spinach

Cut tofu crosswise into 6 slices. Arrange in 1 layer on a triple layer of paper towels and top with another triple layer of towels. Weight with a shallow baking pan or baking sheet and let stand 2 minutes. Repeat weighting with dry paper towels 2 more times.

Stir together soy sauce, sesame oil, honey, ginger, garlic, and Tabasco in a glass pie plate. Add tofu slices in 1 layer and marinate, turning over every couple of minutes, for 10 minutes total.

Spray grill rack or pan with nonstick cooking spray. Heat grill or grill pan to medium heat. Remove tofu slices from baking dish, reserving marinade. Grill tofu slices 3 to 4 minutes on each side, or until browned and crisp on the outside.

While tofu grills, heat vegetable oil in a 12-inch skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then sauté greens, tossing with tongs, until beginning to wilt. Add reserved marinade and sauté, tossing, until greens are just wilted, about 1 minute. Lift greens from skillet with tongs, letting excess marinade drip off, and divide between 2 plates.

Serve greens with tofu slices.

Honey on the Grill Recipes for Omnivores:
Barbecued Pork Sate
Baby Back Ribs with Cranberry Barbecue Sauce

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