Crunchy Vietnamese Cabbage Salad

Adapted from Melissa Clark

You can swap the tofu for meat, or omit for a lighter salad.


3 ½ tablespoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons light brown sugar
2 teaspoons Asian fish sauce, or substitute more soy sauce
 Zest and juice of 1 lime
½ jalapeño, seeded and minced
1 garlic clove, minced
4 tablespoons peanut oil
½ pound extra-firm tofu, cut into slabs, 3/4 inch thick
6 cups shredded cabbage
1 large carrot, grated
⅓ cup coarsely chopped roasted, salted peanuts, plus more to serve
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro, plus more to serve


To make vinaigrette, whisk together 2 tablespoons soy sauce, brown sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoons fish sauce, lime zest and juice, jalapeño and garlic. Whisk in 3 tablespoons peanut oil.
Pat the tofu dry with paper towels. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon peanut oil in a large skillet, preferably nonstick. When it shimmers, add the tofu. Cook 3 minutes without moving, until golden brown on the bottom. Flip and cook 2 minutes more. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce and 1/2 teaspoon fish sauce. Move the tofu to a cutting board, and brush both sides of each slice generously with this mixture. Cut tofu into bite-size pieces.
In a large bowl, toss together tofu, cabbage, carrot, peanuts, cilantro and vinaigrette. Garnish with more peanuts and cilantro.