Monday, December 17, 2012
How To Prepare Extra Firm Tofu
If you are a rookie when it comes to tofu, take heart. Here's a simple Husband-Tested Recipes step-by-step tutorial on how to prepare it. Tofu is low in fat and carbs, has no cholesterol, and is high in protein, calcium, magnesium and iron.
One 16 oz. package of Organic Nasoya Extra Firm Tofu (which has four servings) costs less than $3.00 at Lost River Market & Deli. You will find it in the refrigerated section of the store, so keep it chilled at home. It's packed in a container filled with water. To keep from making a watery mess, place the package in a clean sink. Using a knife or scissors, cut off the plastic top. Drain off the water.
For each block of tofu, you will need two plates and some paper towels (or clean dish towels.) Place a paper towel folded over onto a plate.
Take the tofu out of the plastic tub and place it on the paper towel. Save or recycle the plastic tub. (The tubs stack nicely and can be reused for all sorts of things.)
Place another folded over paper towel on top of the block of tofu. Put another plate on top of the stack. Place a heavy can on top of the plate. This will weigh down the tofu and help remove excess moisture. Why? Tofu is tasteless, so you will want the tofu dry so that it absorbs the flavors of any marinade you make.
After about an hour or so, remove the can, the top plate and the top paper towel. The paper towels will be totally soaked through with liquid and your tofu will be dry. It is now ready to add to whatever dish you wish to prepare. Now, here's a great Husband-Tested Recipe for Marinated Baked Tofu. First, cut the tofu into 1" cubes.
In a medium bowl, mix the following ingredients:
4 Tablespoons soy sauce
2 minced garlic cloves, to taste
1 Tablespoon fresh grated ginger, to taste
1 Tablespoon sesame oil
1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
2 teaspoons honey
½ to 1 teaspoon red chili flakes (optional)
Add the tofu cubes to a container that has a tight-fitting lid. Pour marinade over tofu and cover with the lid.
Refrigerate overnight, turning the container over occasionally so that the marinade completely covers the tofu.
Place the tofu cubes on a rack set on parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Place a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet and then place a rack on top of that. (If you don’t have parchment paper or a baking rack, brush the baking sheet with a little olive oil.) Arrange tofu in single layer on the rack. (Do not discard the marinade!)
Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes, flipping tofu (with tongs) once about halfway through the cooking time and brushing with the remaining marinade.
The tofu cubes will be a lovely brown. To make them slightly crispy around the edges, turn on the broiler and allow the tofu to broil just a few minutes. (Watch carefully so they don’t burn.)
Here is the baked tofu still hot from the oven along with SesameSoba Noodle Salad.
This tofu tastes quite good cold and makes a super addition to your lunchbox for Meatless Monday.