Orange, Fennel, & Saffron Steamed Tofu

Orange, fennel, and saffron steamed tofu with a side of steamed rice or quinoa is one of the most beautifully healthy dinners I know of. I love this dish for so many reasons;

  • You can whip it up in 30 minutes, making it the perfect mid-week meal (and yet it tastes like something you’ve slaved over for hours);
  • It has such complex and delicious flavours while still being extremely light, healthy and nutritious;
  • That citrus and fennel broth smells so fragrant I have to contain myself from eating it like soup with a spoon;
  • It presents beautifully, making it the perfect dish to serve up if you want to impress;
  • It can be enjoyed as a shared appetiser or bulked up with some rice or grains for a hearty dinner; and,
  • Leftovers make perfect lunches the next day, warm or cold!

I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as we do!

An assortment of ingredients for making orange, fennel, and saffron steamed tofu
The ingredients
Step 3: A large pot on medium-low heat that contains the olive oil, onion, fennel, garlic, and orange rind ingredients
Step 3: Heat a large pot with olive oil, onion, fennel, garlic, and orange rind
Step 4: A large pot on medium-low heat with the remaining ingredients added
Step 4: Add the remaining ingredients to the pot
Orange, fennel, and saffron steamed tofu in a bowl of hot vegetable broth
Orange, Fennel, and Saffron Steamed Tofu
Orange, fennel, and saffron steamed tofu in a bowl of hot vegetable broth

Orange, Fennel, & Saffron Steamed Tofu

Course: Dinner, Large Meal, Lunch, Small Meal
Cuisine: Asian, French, Modern Australian
Keyword: Asian, Comfort Food, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, High Protein, Low Carb, Meat Substitute, Nut-Free, Pescatarian, Refined Sugar-Free, Savoury, Vegan, Vegetarian, Warm Food, Winter, Yeast-Free
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 2 bowls
Calories: 412 kcal
Author: Silvia Morris

Orange, fennel, and saffron steamed tofu with a side of steamed rice or quinoa is a beautifully healthy dinner that's sure to impress.



  • 300 g soft silken tofu a single block
  • 2 oranges
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 fennel small bulb, with fronds/leaves attached
  • 1 brown onion medium-sized, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and cut into quarters
  • 2 tomatoes fresh, peeled and roughly diced
  • 1 cup homemade vegetable stock
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 Tbsp fresh thyme sprigs, loosely packed
  • ¼ tsp saffron threads loosely packed
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper
  • 1 pinch ground allspice
  • tsp ground white pepper
  • 1 pinch salt to taste

To Serve

  • 3 spring onions
  • 2 Tbsp dried shallots fried
  • fennel fronds/leaves from the fennel in the main ingredients list
  • 1 tsp black sesame seeds
  • steamed rice or quinoa


  1. Carefully remove the tofu from the packaging, being careful not to break it. Drain the tofu on an absorbent paper towel for at least 5 minutes.

  2. Peel the rind off half an orange with a small knife, avoiding the white pith, and put it aside. Juice the oranges.

  3. Remove the core from the fennel and slice it very finely (preferably with a mandoline slicer). For the garnish, keep aside ¼ of the sliced fresh fennel and pick some of the fronds/leaves.

  4. Heat a large pot on medium-low heat. Add 1 Tbsp olive oil, onion, ¾ of the sliced fennel, garlic, and orange rind to the pot, and sweat them for 5 minutes.

  5. Add the orange juice, chopped tomatoes, homemade vegetable stock, wine, bay leaves, thyme, saffron threads, cayenne pepper, allspice, white pepper, and salt, and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat and simmer uncovered on low for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  6. If serving with rice or quinoa, now is an excellent time to get that cooking!

  7. Remove the ends from the spring onions and very finely slice them. Reserve them for the garnish.

  8. Transfer the drained tofu to a steam-proof plate, and place in a steamer basket. Steam the tofu over the vegetable and broth mixture until heated through (about 8 minutes).

  9. Remove the plate of tofu from the steamer and drain any excess water off the plate.
  10. Strain the vegetable broth mixture, and reserve the liquid.

  11. Carefully place the tofu on a serving plate, being gentle to avoid breaking it. Garnish with the reserved fennel, fried shallots, spring onion, and some fennel fronds. Gently pour the reserved broth over the top. Scatter sesame seeds on top, and season to taste with salt if required. Serve immediately with steamed rice or quinoa.

Recipe Notes

  • I use ½ tsp salt as my homemade vegetable stock has no added salt, but you might use half this amount if you have store bought stock, or want to adjust to your taste.
  • You can find dried, fried shallots at your local Asian grocer.
  • Be sure to use a good quality organic tofu for the best flavour.
Nutrition Facts
Orange, Fennel, & Saffron Steamed Tofu
Amount Per Serving
Calories 412 Calories from Fat 108
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 12g 18%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Sodium 107mg 4%
Potassium 1552mg 44%
Total Carbohydrates 46g 15%
Dietary Fiber 10g 40%
Sugars 22g
Protein 12g 24%
Vitamin A 36.4%
Vitamin C 139.8%
Calcium 23.4%
Iron 22.9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Please read the Silvobeat nutritional facts disclaimer.

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