Posted by: Kennedy | June 20, 2011

Relax… it’s just tofu

I grew up eating what I now fondly call the typical Huron County diet. For those who aren’t familiar with good old HC, let me paint you a picture…

There were no vegetarians in my family (and that includes aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents, etc.). The only restaurant in town that didn’t serve pub food or pizza was the local Chinese place. We ate some form of animal protein daily – usually in the form of beef, chicken or pork at dinnertime.

Mom's roast beef & gravy... hard to beat it.

Needless to say, my tastes weren’t exactly ‘diverse.’ If someone so much as mentioned the word ‘tofu’ in my presence, I immediately scrunched up my nose in disgust as I pictured a gray, squishy, weird-smelling block of nastiness.

Come on guys, I know I’m not alone.

Over the years, I’ve expanded my palate and come to recognize my various food hang-ups were based largely on a “fear of the unknown.” And I’ve discovered that by pre-judging those foods I didn’t grow up on, I was missing out – not only on nutrients, but on flavour, satiety and food culture as well.

I’ve eaten tofu lots of times – in restaurants. But until recently, I’d never attempted to make it at home. I was convinced I wouldn’t be able to make it taste as good as the guys at my neighbourhood Thai restaurant could.

But I finally said to myself enough is enough – it’s time to try it. I bought myself a package of fresh, organic tofu from a vendor at the farmer’s market. Then I went home and Googled “how to cook tofu” (yep, I Google and I’m not ashamed to admit it!)

I found and adapted a simple recipe for a marinade and set to work.

Sweet Ginger & Garlic Tofu Marinade:

1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 Tbsp Tamari soy sauce

1 tsp agave nectar

1 Tbsp minced fresh ginger

1 Tbsp minced fresh garlic

1/2 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp coriander

Pinch cayenne

Fresh ground black pepper

 

I put the marinade ingredients in a container, and with the lid on, shook it up until well mixed.

Meanwhile, I pressed my block of tofu in a dishtowel to remove excess water, then sliced it up in 1/2 inch slices.

In a baking pan, I spread the marinade over and under the tofu slices, covered it and let it marinate for an hour in the fridge, turning the pieces over half way through.

Then I baked it for 30 minutes at 375 degrees, turning over after 15 minutes. I also broiled both sides for a few minutes at the end to give the tofu a nice crusty texture.

 

To complete the meal, I made a veggie stirfry with brown rice, red onion, grape tomatoes, kale and asparagus.

A little black pepper and fresh squeezed lemon sprinkled over top = one tasty plate of health.

 

And since you don’t just eat an entire block of tofu in one sitting like you would with a chicken breast or salmon fillet, I had plenty of leftovers to throw in salads for the rest of the week.

If you’re looking to reduce your consumption of meat or just interested in trying something new, give this recipe a shot and see if tofu is still as scary as you thought.

 

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Responses

  1. Wow, that looks delicious. Can you make that at home some time??
    I could follow your recipe, but it always tastes even better when someone else does the cooking 🙂

    • True story, mom. I plan on making you guys my guinea pigs for a bunch of stuff in August. Will add tofu stir fry to the list!

  2. Yum. Please come over and cook me dinner!

    • Gladly 🙂


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