Tofu. The very word conjures up all sorts of emotions and facial expressions. Believe me, I’ve seen more than my share of raised eyebrows at the mention of a recipe with tofu. Why?
Why the raised eyebrows and puzzling stares?
Here’s what I think….tofu, unless it is cook properly is essentially bland and tasteless. Tasteless food is boring and forgettable. So, if your first exposure to tofu left much to be desired, I suggest you try it again…and make sure it is cooked properly and full of flavor.
What the heck is tofu anyway?
Tofu is soybean curd made from coagulated soy milk. Tofu is mostly used as a substitute for meat and other animal proteins like eggs. In other words, tofu is a neutral, white, cheese-like block of spongy goodness. Tofu is a blank slate. It’s incredibly versatile and easily absorbs flavors. Suggestion** when you cook tofu (saute) use a non-stick pan.
Types of tofu:
There are basically 2 main types of tofu. Firm or extra firm and silken or soft.
What can you make with tofu?
Tofu can be used in a variety of recipes like soups, dips, desserts, stir-frys, smoothies and scrambles to name a few.
Why eat tofu? Some nutritional benefits…
- loaded with B vitamins
- excellent source of lean protein
- low in fat
- easy to digest
This recipe has been adapted from an original recipe by Chop Chop Magazine. Makes 4 servings.
Garnishes: scallions, chopped fresh basil or cilantro
- Remove tofu from package and rinse under cold water. Pat dry with a clean paper towel, then wrap with paper towels and lightly press on tofu block to release some of the water. Allow tofu block to sit on a clean counter wrapped in paper towel for 10-15 minutes to allow more water to drain.
- Cut block of tofu in half, then half again and once more to get 8 pieces of equal size.
- In a large non-stick pan or wok, heat the sesame oil on medium/high heat and then cook the tofu about 4 minutes each side until golden brown.
- Remove the cooked tofu from the pan and set aside.
- Peanut sauce can be prepared ahead of time or as tofu is cooking. Combine peanut butter, water, soy sauce, lime juice, garlic and ginger in a medium mixing bowl. You may need to add more water depending on how thick you want the consistency of the sauce.
- Arrange tofu on a plate or platter and pour peanut sauce on top. Garnish with diced scallions or fresh chopped basil or cilantro. To make a complete meal, serve with a small side of brown rice and steamed broccoli. Enjoy!