Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Sesame Marinated Tofu

First and foremost, Happy Birthday Butter! Tomorrow is Tim's birthday, and I couldn't be happier or more proud of the amazing husband and father he is. We sing, we laugh, we love - we have a wonderful life. I love you, so very much.

Secondly, because of the picture, I'm just now noticing a particular habit with marinated tofu... I always serve it with rice. Anyone else pick up on that? Don't be boring (or lazy?) like me, use noodles or a mix of stir-fried veggies to accompany the tofu. I'm going to try noodles next time, really. Although, I have to admit, it tasted great with rice.

However, back to the recipe. This was another great tofu marinade that Tim and I eagerly gobbled up! Most tofu marinades I've found have 3 things in common: soy sauce, ginger and sesame. Well, there's a reason for that - it's good. Really good.

Bursting with flavor, the only thing I would adapt in this recipe is the soy sauce. If you are not a big salt fan, go easy with it. Especially when you press the tofu. Our pressed tofu (...which I usually never do. Again, I'm lazy) really did pick up a lot more of the marinade, and the major flavor of this recipe is soy sauce.

Also, skip the pressing of tofu if you're in a hurry (or lazy), but let it marinate for as long as you can. For example, make the tofu marinade before work, and by the time you are home, you only have to make a side and pan fry the tofu for a wonderful dinner.

Sesame Marinated Tofu
adapted by Tofu for Two, from Epicurious

1 14 ounce block firm tofu, drained
1/3 cup soy sauce (use low sodium soy sauce, if possible)
2 tablespoons sesame seed oil
3 teaspoons grated ginger
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 green chili pepper, diced (I used hot chili pepper flakes)
3 tablespoons canola oil
3 teaspoons raw cane sugar (I used 5 teaspoons regular sugar)
1-2 teaspoons of lime juice

First, drain and press the tofu: Cut the tofu into slices 1-2 cm thick, then wrap a kitchen towel between the slices, and put a weight on top of the slices, or press them with your hands. Take care not to use too much strength, so the texture of the tofu stays intact. Once the towel is wet, replace it, and repeat the procedure a couple of times. This dramatically improves the ability of tofu to absorb tastes.

Next, cut the tofu into desired shape (I made triangles, or you can make cubes, etc). Place the tofu in a container with a tightly sealed lid.

Combine the ginger, garlic and chili, and add the rest of the ingredients. Pour the marinade over the tofu, close the container, and shake it thoroughly. Place tofu in the refrigerator, ideally overnight, but at least for a couple of hours, shaking it every now and then.

Heat a skillet over medium heat. Once hot, place the tofu in the pan. No oil is necessary, since the tofu has some in it from the marinade. Cook the tofu until browned on each side, stirring or flipping as necessary.

Or try these alternate ways of cooking the tofu: Grilled kabobs, spreading the rest of the marinade on the vegetables before barbecuing. Or in stir-fries.

More recipes for marinated tofu:
- Grilled Marinated Tofu Wraps, from Fun & Food Blog
- Marinated Tofu and Cucumber Skewers, from Raspberry Eggplant
- Ginger Sesame Tofu, from The Book of Yum
- Maple Roasted Tofu with Asparagus, from Veggie Meal Plans (this is definitely on my to-try list!)

Guten appetit!


seamaiden said...

Hi! Thanks for mentioning the recipe on my blog :) I highly recommend you try my grilled ginger sesame tofu, especially if you found the above recipe a little salty. It's delicious! I'll have to try your recipe as well. By the way, my blog is called the Book of Yum, and the cookbook that I adapted the recipe from is called Vegan Vittles (not the vegan grill- that was just the name of the post). Have a great day! Gotta love tofu. :)


Larky Lady said...

Yum, sounds good! I'll have to check out seamaiden's stuff too. Vegan Vittles was the first vegan cookbook I remember using! Of course, we changed almost every recipe in there. I liked the Muffins That Taste Like Donuts, but I think we added some salt to the recipe. I also LOVE the Lemon Cloud Pie recipe, but I nixed the topping and it's yummy. A for sure favorite.

Heikki said...

Sesame, ginger and soy sauce is the best combo, especially when the tofu is grilled!

I've been recently using sake as a component as well. A simple sake, soy sauce, ginger and sugar marinade is great too!

Betty K said...

This was delicious! We didn't cut down on the soy- but used a reduced sodium soy sauce. My one recommendation would be to make sure you don't use a "silken firm tofu" but a regular firm tofu as the silken variety is fragile. This is going into the rotation!!

Denise DanielsLittle said...

Delicious, absolutely yummy! Though, I did find the sauce a bit too watery and had to add cornstarch twice, 4 tsp and then 3 tsp (after doubling the recipe). I used this with the tofu & then stir-fried veggies (broccoli & asparagus) Tofu was delightful! As I have recently overdone it with garlic, I was a bit light with it. Added some sesame seeds, almond slivers & more sesame seeds at the end, once plated. Fantastic recipe!