This is a delicious, substantial Japanese-inspired salad that is very good for kapha and pitta (dosha in Ayurveda). It is low in fat but very nourishing with protein from tofu and lots of crunchy vegetables. This dish includes sesame seeds – an amazing seed credited with everything from keeping our bones health and building ojas to keeping us looking young.


  • 80g green beans, topped and tailed

  • 200g firm tofu, sliced horizontally to form two steaks

  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil, plus extra for brushing tofu

  • 11/2 tsp sesame seeds

  • 80g mangetout, strings removed

  • 80g sugar snap peas, strings removed

  • 1 small carrot, peeled and cut into thin strips

  • Handful of shredded red cabbage

  • 50g noodles (buckwheat noodles for kapha, rice noodles for pitta), cooked according to packet instructions (optional)

  • 1/2 spring onion, green parts sliced (kapha only)

  • Dressing

  • 100g silken tofu

  • 1/2 tbsp tamari

  • 1/2 tbsp mirin

  • 1/2 tsp caster sugar

  • 1/2 tsp ginger paste


  • 1.

    Blanch the beans in a pan of boiling water until crisp yet tender, around 2–3 minutes. Drain.

  • 2.

    Heat a griddle pan or the grill. Season the tofu steaks on both sides, brush with sesame oil, place on the hot griddle pan or under the grill and grill for 3 minutes on each side.

  • 3.

    Meanwhile, lightly toast the sesame seeds in a dry frying pan, keeping an eye on them as when they turn brown, they turn fast. Tip most of them (reserve a few for garnish) into a pestle and mortar and roughly crush.

  • 4.

    Place the vegetables and noodles in a large bowl. Whisk or blend together the ingredients for the dressing, pour into the bowl, add the crushed sesame seeds and toss well. Place the tofu on top, brush with sesame oil and sprinkle over the spring onions and reserved sesame seeds. Serve.


Exclusive recipe from chef and food writer Anjum Anand

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