How to cook tofu

  • Posted by: sandra
  • March 4, 2014


Andrea N. March 6, 2014
It's kind of amazing -- all the ways you can manipulate and cook tofu. Marinating extra- or super-firm tofu is great for many people, especially when you’re starting out. The tofu is easy to cook and turns into a flavorful steak. Tofu is a protein and as I discovered while researching and writing my book, "Asian Tofu" -- anything you can do with animal protein you can do with tofu. Tofu is just another protein so treat it that way. Yes, it looks kind of weird (a block of whiteness) and you can eat it out of the package – but if it’s not super fresh and flavorful, you’d mistaken tofu for space alien food. If you tinker with seasoning and cooking tofu, you'll experience its wonderfulness. It’s a versatile food that takes on the qualities of other ingredients super well.

If you're a vegetarian, here's my recipe for a vegan version of Sichuan ma po tofu. There’s a cool method to fake the ground meat that’s use for the traditional version. At the bottom of the post is a link to a DIY tofurkey with miso mustard sauce. Have fun and if you ask more tofu questions, there are many of us here to help you out!
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M.McAwesome March 5, 2014
This article from Food52 In Defense of Tofu was what brought me to this site and what got me over any wariness I had over cooking with tofu at home. Read that and then make this:
You will be glad you did. The technique of pressing then marinating and baking tofu is something you can use again and again for all kinds of dishes.
HalfPint March 5, 2014
My best tofu experiences start with deep fried tofu. Cubed, patted dry, and then deep fried to a golden crisp. These golden nuggets can then be stewed in a sauce (just about any sauce), stir-fried, baked, braised or eaten as is. The texture when stewed or braised, becomes chewy with a tender middle. The cubes become loaded little sauce bombs. In stir-fries, they stay crisp and intact, even with all the stirring and tossing. My favorite tofu prep is Salt & Pepper Tofu. This is the dish that finally converted my tofu-hating husband. He devours this in minutes.
Here's a great recipe,
Vaishali March 5, 2014
Do the same preparation as above. Prepare a marinade of Tamari, olive oil, salt and pepper. Let it marinate for about an hour. Preheat oven to 350 deg and bake the tofu in a well oiled baking pan. 10 minutes on the first side and 20-30 minutes on the other side.
tyrannyofcake March 5, 2014
I like to slice it about 1/4 inch thick by about an inch wide, press it between towels for a bit to pull out the water, then marinate it in soy sauce and homemade hot sauce for a few minutes. Once its soaked up a little of the marinade, I pan fry the slices in peanut oil for a couple minutes on each side until crisp and deep golden brown on the outside. Drain on paper towels briefly before serving.
pierino March 5, 2014
It took me awhile to take tofu seriously but I've since come around. I usually use "firm" or "extra firm". I use it diced up in any number of Korean or Chinese soups. I also will use a ridged grill pan to put some nice grill marks on it and then slice it into strips. The strips are nice in sushi type roll ups or Korean gim bap.
ATG117 March 4, 2014
My favorite way to cook tofu is cooked in a marinade. Search baked tofu on this site and others. You should come up with some good ideas.
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