Tofu started being used for cooking around 200 B.C. in China. This ancient food has a number of health benefits and is surprisingly adaptable. Tofu doesn't carry much flavor on its own, but it does soak up marinades and other seasonings remarkably well and can be prepared a number of ways. To make sure your tofu packs a flavorful punch, you can prepare it before cooking. Marinating tofu is an excellent way to eat healthily and flavorfully.
Things You'll Need
- Tofu (firm or extra firm recommended for most main dishes)
- Marinade of your choice
- Cutting board
- Paper towels
- Plastic wrap
Slice open the tofu package with your knife and drain out all of the water. Remove the block of tofu and place it on your cutting board so you can begin pressing the water out of it.
Place a layer of paper towels on the cutting board and on top of the tofu block. Place your pan on top of the paper towels and put something heavy in it, or press down gently with your hands until you observe water being squeezed from the tofu. The more water you can get out of the tofu, the more marinade it will absorb.
Cut the tofu into the desired shape and distribute it evenly in the pan. Add your marinade, being sure to cover every piece of the tofu. You can use any bottled marinade, or create your own using various sauces and spices.
Cover the pan with plastic wrap and place it in your refrigerator. Tofu will readily absorb the flavoring of the marinade the longer it is marinated. If you store it overnight it will be ready to cook, but if you can marinate it for two days or more it will have even more flavor.
Remove the pan from the refrigerator and remove the plastic wrap. The tofu is now ready to grill, cook, bake or can be eaten raw in sandwiches, salads or other dishes.
Experiment with different marinades to find your favorite. Barbecue sauce, steak sauce, teriyaki sauce, oyster sauce and Jamaican jerk sauce all make excellent marinades for tofu, but you can be creative and make your own sauces.
Add flavorful vegetables like garlic, scallions, chilies and onions to your tofu marinade to enhance the flavor even more. The tofu will pick up these flavors both as it marinates and as it cooks.
Tips & Warnings
- Once tofu is removed from the packaging, it should be consumed within five days. If you marinate it in the refrigerator for a few days, make sure to use it before it spoils.
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