• Tofu banh mi (Chris Middlton)Source: Chris Middlton

This sandwich is the mutt's nuts. Well, not literally, because then it wouldn't be vegan, but it is out-of-this-world delicious and packed full of umami goodness. Pass us the chilli! 






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  • 250 g (9 oz) firm tofu 
  • 1 tbsp olive oil 
  • 2 Vietnamese bread rolls or similar 
  • ½ quantity pickled daikon & carrot (see Note) 
  • 1 small cucumber, cut into batons 
  • 4 spring onions (scallions), shredded 
  • 1 small red chilli, thinly sliced 
  • small handful coriander (cilantro) sprigs 


  • 2.5 cm (1 in) piece ginger, chopped 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce 
  • 1 tsp Sriracha 
  • 1 tsp sesame oil 
  • juice of 1 lime 
  • 1 lemongrass stalk, white part only, thinly sliced 
  • ½ tsp sugar 

Satay sauce

  • 125 g (4½ oz/½ cup) crunchy peanut butter 
  • 2 tbsp hoisin sauce 
  • 2 tsp freshly minced garlic and ginger 
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 small red chilli, finely chopped 
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • ½ tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp grated palm sugar

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Marinating time: 30 minutes

To make the marinade, whisk all of the ingredients in a large shallow bowl. 

Cut the tofu into 1 cm (½ in) thick slices, add to the marinade and stir to coat well. Cover and set aside in the fridge for at least 30 minutes (it will keep perfectly for up to 24 hours). 

To make the satay sauce, combine all of the ingredients and 2 tablespoons water in a small saucepan and stir over low heat until the peanut butter has melted a little and the sauce is well combined. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool. 

Heat the olive oil in a non-stick frying pan over high heat and add the marinated tofu and a little of the marinade. Cook for 3–4 minutes until the marinade starts to caramelise. Flip the tofu over and reduce the heat to medium. Add a little more marinade and cook for a further 3–4 minutes, until the tofu is starting to crisp and the sauce has reduced to a sticky goo. Remove from the heat and set aside. 

Split open the Vietnamese rolls and spoon in a generous amount of satay sauce. Add the cooked tofu and pile on the pickled daikon and carrot and cucumber batons. Top with the spring onion and sprinkle over the chilli and coriander to finish. 



•  For the daikon and carrot pickles, combine 115 g (4 oz/½ cup) caster (superfine) sugar, 125 ml (4 oz/½ cup) rice wine vinegar or white vinegar, ½ tsp salt and 170 ml (5½ oz/ cup) water in a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Simmer for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sugar dissolves. Place 100 g (3½ oz) daikon, and 100 g (3½ oz) carrot, sliced into batons, into a large sterilised glass jar and pour the hot pickling liquid over the top. Seal the jar and set aside in the fridge for at least 3 hours or preferably overnight. The pickles will keep for up to 2 weeks in the fridge. 


This recipe is from In Bread (Smith Street Books). Photography by Chris Middleton.