Posts Tagged ‘tofu’

How to: press & drain tofu

In technique on September 20, 2010 at 2:51 pm

Okay, I have never written this down before because it always sounds dumb. But it is the best technique I’ve found for pressing and draining a package of tofu.

Usually I’ll do this in the morning before I go to work on the day I am going to cook a tofu dish, so it sits at least 10 hours. Even a few hours of sitting in the fridge should make your tofu easier to fry or bake.

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Tofu with braised carrots

In recipe on September 10, 2010 at 5:37 pm

Fancy tofu

Some foods come with baggage. I’ll never be able to eat fava beans (even if they are growing like weeds in my garden) because of THIS.

Although not associated with a psychopathic murderer, tofu comes with its own baggage. If I were to anthropomorphize tofu, the words “self-righteous,” “earnest,” and “bland” come to mind. Tofu tries hard but always comes off a bit judge-y.

Here are things that tofu is not (usually): edgy, sophisticated, flavorful. It’s not a show-off dish, it’s a trusty sidekick that can’t help but being the straight guy.

Then Vegetarian Times goes and proves me wrong! This tofu dish, with braised carrots and tomatoes, is tasty and, dare I say, quite refined. Serve it to impress and do away with all those nasty tofu misconceptions.

Tofu with braised carrots

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Tofu veggie stir fry

In recipe on June 12, 2010 at 10:27 am

UGH. Ever get in a rut in the kitchen? When you feel like you only cook the same 4 dishes (or variations thereof) over and over, and yes, you’re getting good enough too cook them in your sleep, but why on why can’t you come up with anything NEW?

My culinary monotony is not from lack of sources. There’s that full shelf of my own cookbooks, plus all my roommates’. I happily peruse cooking blogs, and always keep an eye out for good recipes to tear out in magazines. It’s the same feeling I get in the morning, bleary-eyed and cranky, when I stand in front of my (very full) closet and moan, “I’ve got nothing to wear!”

There were a few weeks there when we first moved in, that I made a crustless quiche and lasagna each week.

Time for something new and different.

Tofu veggie stir fry

This tofu stir-fry did the trick.

Note: when making it, I followed the recipe and did NOT fry the tofu before adding it to the vegetables.

Bad move–it added probably 20 minutes to the cooking time. I have learned the hard way with tofu – it needs time and space to crisp properly and get that delightful golden-brown color. Else you’ll end up with poached tofu (not bad if that’s what you are going for).

Fitness Magazine calls this Buddha Tofu, but let’s just call it a Tofu Veggie Stir Fry, shall we?

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Tofu Provencal

In recipe on October 1, 2009 at 7:20 pm

Tofu is a tricky beast. The first time I had it, in my pre-veg days, it was served raw, sitting on a bed of vegetables. It looked and felt like a slimy wet hand that you have to shake, and tasted like… well, nothing.

For a long time I thought that I actually hated tofu, and didn’t really give it a chance. Now, I am a little more experienced with it, but still find oftentimes that many recipes call for a deep frying, or baking. My favorite tofu dish (below!) embraces the texture of tofu without having to fry it in lots of oil.

This Tofu Provencal from Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything Vegetarian is perfect for that because the tofu plumps up and remains kind of mooshy, in a way that totally works with the texture of the olives. First time I made it, I was like, “IS MY TOFU GOING TO BE COOKED ENOUGH? WILL I DIE?” But then I realized, duh, that’s one of the benefits of not eating meat: you really have to try to poison yourself! Read the rest of this entry »