Tofu; you either love it or hate it! We love it, but it hasn’t always been that way. We first tried it in an Asian style soup and it was simply cubed and dropped into the broth for a few minutes before it was served. It really didn’t taste of anything, and the texture was rubbery. We’ve tried semi firm tofu cooked like scrambled egg. It’s broken up in the pan while cooking and you add flavour and turmeric for colour. We don’t like it like this either; it feels too much like egg in my mouth.
I came across this method while researching other ways to cook it. A recipe I saw dried the tofu in the oven on a low heat for a few minutes before frying it. The author was cheating, so as not to have to press the water out of the tofu for hours! So I thought, why not just bake it in the oven without oil.
Tofu is bland! It doesn’t taste of the soy beans it’s made from; it doesn’t taste like anything so you have to season or marinate it, so it takes on flavour. I use various methods of marinating depending on what I’m using the tofu for. This recipe makes the tofu nice and crispy, perfect for stir fry’s, wraps, summer rolls and burgers. Tofu is very high in protein and it an excellent meat substitute.
I only use 1 packet of tofu in this recipe and it serves all 5 of us. Most recipes call for pressing the water out of the tofu block for at least an hour. This is because it has a high water content and most recipes deep or shallow fry it in oil. I don’t bother with that (who’s got that sort of time?!) Besides, we need a little water left in the tofu to dry out in the oven, making it crispy.
The picture along with this recipe shows the tofu on top of stir fried rice noodles and veggies. We don’t mix it into the noodles as it will go soggy and we don’t want that.
I use the Tonzu brand as it’s organic and made in NZ. You can find out all about this brand here: http://www.tonzu.co.nz/products/organic-tofu/
I prefer the Braggs brand of nutritional yeast, but you can use whatever you like. If you don’t like nutritional yeast, you can sub it for any other seasoning flakes. Onion flakes are a nice substitute. I wouldn’t use powder, as it will clump when it comes into contact with the tofu and the water. You can also change the All Purpose seasoning to suit your preference. This substitute can be a powder, it will sit on top of the previous seasoning layer.
1 pack Tonzu tofu (or any other brand of firm tofu)
5 tbsp Braggs Nutritional Yeast
1 tbsp Masterfoods All Purpose Seasoning
Pre-heat your oven to 200º Celsius
Drain the tofu block, being careful not to break it
Place a clean, dry tea towel on a chopping board
Put the tofu block onto the centre of the towel and cover with another clean, dry folded tea towel
Place something heavy on top of the tofu. I use 3 or 4 cook books. Leave it for 10 minutes
Line a baking tray with baking paper or a silicone mat*
Pour the nutritional yeast into a shallow bowl or plate
Remove the tofu and place it on a dry chopping board, or turn over the one you already used
With a sharp, straight bladed knife slice the tofu width ways, into 1cm thick slices and cut each slice in half
Using your hand, carefully coat the slices in the nutritional yeast, ensuring they are evenly coated. Place them onto the baking tray leaving a small gap
Once all the slices are coated and on the tray, sprinkle them with the All Purpose seasoning. They don’t need to be completely covered
Cook for 20-25 minutes until the edges are brown and the slices are crispy. There is no need to turn them over during cooking
Remove from the oven and try not to eat them all before you serve them with the rest of your meal!
*If you use a silicone mat, you will need to turn the slices over after 20 minutes to get both sides crispy.