Marmalade Tofu with Kale and Lemon Pearl Couscous

Marmalade Tofu with Kale and Lemon Pearl Couscous

Did anyone make the marmalade? This is the perfect recipe to use it in. If you’re not up for making marmalade from scratch, that’s not a problem. Next time you’re at the store pick up a small jar and use that instead. In fact, using store-bought marmalade makes this dish super-duper easy to prepare.

Marmalade chicken is one of those simple dinner dishes that home cooks have been preparing for themselves or their families for years because it’s not only damn easy, but also damn tasty. There are a ton of different recipes available for it online, some just call for marmalade and chicken (or in our case, tofu or seitan), and some make a more elaborate marinade using the marmalade as a base.

This dish is as easy as you want it to be, super flavorful, and infinitely customizable. You can use a base of rice, couscous, pasta, quinoa, millet, polenta (and so on) and dress it up with any simply prepared greens or veggies you’ve got. If your using a rice cooker for your starch, and the oven for the tofu, you can quickly steam or saute up any other accompaniment without much fuss.

Marmalade Tofu with Kale and Lemon Pearl Couscous

I grilled the tofu after I baked it because I love grill marks. The use of a grill or a grill pan is totally optional, unless you’re like me and like really pretty tofu. If you’re free of my strange tofu vanity issues, don’t worry one bit. However, if you do break out the grill pan, be careful not to burn the ‘fu. All the sugar in the marmalade makes for easily scorched tofu if you’re not careful. I may or may not be speaking from experience. *cough cough*

One last thing before I jump into the recipe. Pearl couscous. Oh my goodness, have you tried this stuff? I love it! It’s also called israeli couscous or maftoul. Like regular coucous, it’s actually a pasta, but it’s like couscous on steroids. It’s really fun and a nice change of pace from rice. You should be able to find it near the regular couscous, either in a package near the pastas or in a bin in the bulk food section of your local grocery store. You can boil/drain it like regular pasta, or cook it in a skillet like risotto. Very cool stuff.

Marmalade Tofu with Kale and Lemon Pearl Couscous
Serves two with leftover tofu, easily scaled

1 14 oz block of Super Firm Tofu, pressed well (or 4 seitan cutlets)
1 Recipe Marmalade Marinade, below

Couscous, risotto style
1 Cup Pearl Couscous
2 tsp Oil
2 tsp Fresh Lemon Juice
Zest from 1 Lemon
1/2 tsp Salt (scant)
2 to 2 1/2 Cups Water

1 bunch Kale (or about 2 cups veg of choice)
2 tsp Oil
2 Tbs Water
1-2 tsp Tamari
1/4 cup Sliced Almonds

Marmalade Marinade
5 Tbs Marmalade
2 Tbs Tamari or Soy Sauce (reduced sodium)
1 Tbs Fresh Lemon Juice
1/2 tsp Hot Chili Flakes (optional)
1/4 tsp Ginger (optional)
Freshly Ground Black Pepper

Preheat oven to 400º F.

My favorite method for pressing tofu: Pour off all excess water. Wrap the tofu in two paper towels. Then wrap the tofu in a terrycloth kitchen towel. Place a cast-iron skillet on top (or anything else that’s flat and heavy and can get wet) and let sit for 20 minutes or longer. After 20 minutes, the towel should be soaked through and the tofu nice and firm. The paper towel just protects the tofu from any lint or, um, cat hair that might be on the towel.  Slice the block into 8 even rectangles.

Marmalade Tofu - Pre Bake In a baking dish that will fit all the tofu snuggly, whisk together your marinade. Add the tofu (or seitan) and coat each piece. Bake for 30 minutes, flipping halfway. There should still be a little marinade in the bottom of the dish after baking, just enough to use as a glaze.

When tofu is halfway done, heat oil in a large skillet an add dry couscous. Stir for a few minutes until each pearl is coated and lightly toasted. Add lemon juice, zest and salt. 2 cups of water and let simmer, stirring frequently, and watch as the couscous absorbs the liquid. When all liquid is absorbed, try a pearl to see if it is cooked through. Add more water as necessary. You can also boil the couscous, drain, then mix in the salt, juice and zest with a little oil.

In the last few minutes, heat the oil for the kale in a wok or large skillet. (The tofu will hold nicely in a warm oven if you need more time.) Add washed, torn kale and toss to coat. Add water to the hot pan and quickly cover with any lid that will fit to quick-steam the kale. Remove the lid after a few minutes (admire how tender and green the kale looks) and saute to cook off any remaining liquid. Add almonds and tamari, stirring well, until the almonds are lightly toasted.

Plate the couscous and then the kale. Add the tofu on top, and drizzle any remaining glaze over everything. Garnish with extra almonds if desired.

Marmalade Tofu with Kale and Lemon Pearl Couscous


  1. VeggieGirl

    I’m OBSESSED with kale (ask anyone – I always say that I eat it everyday, which is true!! haha). That dish looks like a perfect way to incorporate that lovely marmalade that you created!

  2. Amy

    looks tasty and beautifully prepared! thanks for the recipe. i too, have the pretty tofu syndrome…all food should look pretty on the plate!

  3. Joanna

    Hey Lolo, have you ever tried fregula sarda? It’s sort of an Italian couscous, similarly sized to Israeli couscous, but it’s toasted and the little pearls take on different shades of brown. I like Israeli couscous too but I looooooooooove fregula sarda, it’s possibly my favorite grain. I definitely recommend it if you can find it! In the meantime, this looks really fresh and tasty.

  4. Lolo

    magpie – Regular couscous doesn’t even need a rice cooker — you can just pour boiling water over it and let it sit, covered, and it will cook up all by itself. I’m not sure about pearl couscous in a rice cooker, I haven’t tried it! It might very well work with a ratio of 2:1 couscous to water.

  5. meghan

    i think SOME people still eat marmalade.
    my stepmother’s father ate it on toast for breakfast every day of his life! i really like it, but rarely have it.

    this looks really really good!

  6. cookinpanda

    What a nice idea. I love the combination of ingredients here and Israeli couscous– one of my favorites. I especially like your pretty tofu, and sometimes I wish I took more time to make my tofu prettier.

  7. Doodleyboo

    I wanted to try the marmalade because it’s such a small batch recipe it’s perfect for me. I want to give lemon marmalade a try. And on tofu! I never thought of that. I will definitely have to try that out. Thanks for the tip!

  8. Kathleen

    I have some pearl couscous that I got on accident (however that happens) and I didn’t know what to do with it. This is perfect! I love kale, and the marmalade glaze sounds delicious.

    And, as always, BEAUTIFUL photography!

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  10. hilary

    Sounds and looks delicious! I can’t wait to make it.

    I didn’t make the tangelo marmalade, but you inspired me to make some Meyer lemon marmalade, which is also good. Thanks!

  11. tofufreak

    that looks so yummy!!

    id been wondering about couscous for the longest time because, at the restaurant that i had it at, the couscous seemed a lot bigger than the kind i have (hodgson mills) thanks for the clarification!

  12. ilene

    I JUST tried pearl cous cous and it’s really great stuff. If you cook it 1:1.5 (water) it comes out great in about 10 minutes flat.

  13. Mandee

    I saw this photo yest’day and couldn’t stop thinking about what a lovely photo it was and how nice the tofu looked. So I made it tonight, it was delish! I added some corn and red capsicum in with the tofu and I did white rice w/ lemon and a side salad. Thanks for a great dish for winter :) xox

  14. Laurin

    I decided to make this last night as soon as I saw the post yesterday morning. I went to the grocery store during lunch to get tofu, kale and marmalade so that I could start making it as soon as I got home at the end of the day–that is how excited I was to try this!

    Anyway, I blogged about it at:
    so check it out! (and as always, my pictures are inferior to yours!)

    Keep up the complete meal recipes, because this one was awesome and is totally part of my repertoire now! Sometimes it’s nice to have three nice things to go together for a meal, as opposed to one really awesome main dish with .. frozen string beans on the side (or something like that). Even suggestions for sides would be nice if you had them.

    Anyway–I love your site (I visit regularly). I also recently made the Rotini Alfako and I really liked it!

  15. seitan eater

    Thats so odd combination(tofu+marmalade???) at I think I MUST try it ;) Wery cool, artistificial photos also->makes my mouth watering when just looking that picture! YOUR COOKINGS REALLY ROCK`S!
    Cheers from Finland!

  16. Judith


    You have no idea how grateful I am to you today. I have some firm tofu (okay, not extra firm, but it’ll do) in my fridge that I really need to use, and also some maramalade I want to use, but it *never* occured to me to put them together. I’ll probably use frozen spinach and/or broccoli and storebought couscous to save money, but still, this is awesome.

  17. Michelle

    This looks incredible – thanks for another great dinner idea! I love your website – your recipes are a great source for the mother of a vegan!

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  19. Madhuram

    Lolu, This is my first time here. What an excellent website that you have. I love your photos and thanks for sharing the new couscous recipe.


  20. Suzanne

    I made this tonight – yummy!! I’ll post pictures tomorrow. Great work Lauren…another big hit! (Oh, and we made pancakes again today…all smiles)

  21. Nicole

    Absolutely beautiful! I’ve been wanting to start cooking more often with tofu as the main course but I’ve in been in a rut with the same marinated, pan-fried tofu dish. I’m bookmarking this one so that maybe I’ll remember to give it a try next time! I love marmelade so I’m sure this will be great!

  22. CW Guy

    I’ll have to echo some of the previous sentiments and say the photography here is very well done.

    Also, your description of ‘little italy’ made me want to go out and find some specialty italian shops! Keep up the great entries.

    CW Guy

  23. Sophie

    I’ve bookmarked this to try later. Tofu seems to work really well with strong, tart flavours and it is so nice to have a change from all of those thai style tofu dishes (I’ve just tried tofu with a rhubarb sauce which worked really well too)

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  26. Jennifer

    I tried this dish about 2 weeks ago… I was in love from the first bite! I kept commenting to my fiance that this dish was better than the majority of dishes in restaurants. I had to make it again this week, but this time I used spinach instead of kale & it was equally as great!!

  27. Laura

    I made this for dinner tonight, and it was delicious! I used some Trader Joe’s harvest grains blend (Israeli couscous, red quinoa, orzo pasta and lentils) and served with a side of roasted brussels sprouts tossed in sesame oil. My store-bought marmalade is the “low sugar” version but everything was still tasty, orange-y and sweet.

    Thanks for the great recipes. My boyfriend and I are not vegans, but we’ve gone mostly vegetarian at home and I’m trying to cook lots of plant-based meals these days. This is a great blog and a great resource!

  28. Jeff

    This was definitely one of the five best things I’ve ever made. It was so A-W-E-S-O-M-E!

    I think I might go make more of the tofu right now, even though I just ate.

    I used barley instead of the couscous to get a whole grain in there. It took 4 cups of water and twice as long, but the lemon zest and juice was exactly the right amount. Delicious.

    I second Laurin’s sentiment that offering recipes for whole meals is great. The combo of the kale, couscous (or barley, in my case) with the tofu was perfect. And such a healthy meal.

    Thank you so much for this. It was amazing. And so easy! Starting at 7:00 with my cooking partner it was on the table by 8:35, even with breaks to chat. (We usually don’t eat until 10:30 b/c of complex recipes and wine.)

    PS: I found this recipe on the iPhone app, so thanks for that, too!

  29. erisgrrrl

    I made this this morning to take in my lunch for work. I used tofu that had been frozen so it’d have a firmer texture, jarred marmalade and korean chili paste along with the other ingredients. It was great! I don’t really care for kale and I forgot not to eat the spinach in the fridge so I used a zucchini that I sauted in olive oil, salt/pepper and lemon juice. Each on it’s own was delicious and all together it was amazing! :D Thanks for a great meal-in-one! I like this kind of cooking b/c we’re not the best at choosing side dishes – and I’m horrible at time them! Everyone should try this recipe now now now! :D

  30. Stephanie

    I am in the process of going vegetarian but really don’t want to rely too much on the usual dairy and cheese. And this recipe seems very close to a salmon recipe I used to make a long time ago with marmalade and almonds :) I don’t like salmon anymore, and though I’ve never tried tofu in a main dish before, I’m sure this would be a great way to eat it for the first time. I actually have tofu in the fridge, I was going to experiment, but this is perfect… I have everything I need to make this tonight!

    It’s my first time visiting your blog by the way, and I can’t wait to read more! Thanks for the recipe(s)!

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