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Topic: What to do with tofu?  (Read 7386 times)
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« Reply #10 on: November 04, 2007 10:19:28 PM »

I created this Vegan version of Palak Paneer for my  'Aspiring Popeye' who also happens to be obsessed with Indian food.  We eat Vegan 98% of the time.

Cut a tofu block into small cubes. 
Stir fry tofu and diced onions in canola oil (or another oil that doesn't add flavor) on MEDIUM heat.
Season HEAVILY with curry powder (until tofu is day-glo yellow).
Cook tofu until firm and onions are clear - but neither is browned (unless you like it that way).
Drain a can of spinach, add the spinach and stir fry an additional 3 minutes on medium heat.
(optional) You can add a dollop of margarine to the spinach to recreate the 'buttery-flavor' of the original recipe.
Dash of pepper and sea salt or garlic salt for flavor.

(My six year old son has a much higher threshold for seasonings and spicy hot flavors than I do.  I leave out cumin, chili, and bay leaves because I don't like them. But feel free to add them as they would make the dish more authentic.)

Serve over brown rice.
This is a VERY filling meal.  It feeds both of us generously and we have enough left over for lunch the next day.
*This photo contains a few shredded carrots that I added, simply because I had a tiny amount left over from another meal.

« Last Edit: December 04, 2007 11:47:41 AM by JeepChick.net - Reason: Photo added » THIS ROCKS   Logged
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« Reply #11 on: November 04, 2007 10:33:09 PM »

that sounds awesome. I love palak paneer.

« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2007 06:53:41 AM »

I've done a few things with tofu that I like.  First, I like adding it to my soy/fruit shakes.  I'll take a small slice and add it.  If you are making chili, you can crumble some in with your chili or any other dish like this.  I also have a great recipe that I love.

Tofu Stir Fry

14 ounces firm tofu
8 medium mushrooms, sliced
1 large carrot, shredded
  medium yellow onion
inch fresh gingerroot, coarsely grated
2-3 garlic cloves
cup sugar snap peas
5 sprigs cilantro
2-3 tablespoons light soy sauce
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/3 cup water
1 dash pepper
1 dash hot chili peppers, to taste
1 cup rice

Start the rice in medium pot.

Heat medium sauce pan on medium heat, and add soy sauce when the pan is hot.  Add tofu, cover and cook for 5-7 minutes.

A few minutes after starting the tofu cooking, heat another deep sauce pan.  It is important that the tofu and the main ingredients finish around the same time so that the tofu doesnt dry out.  If the tofu does finish early, just turn off the heat and let it sit until you are ready to add it to the main ingredients in the second sauce pan.

Bring the second pan to medium high heat, add the olive oil, and then add the garlic, ginger, and onion.  Stir fry for 4-5 minutes or until the onion becomes a little soft (according to your tastes).  Add the mushrooms, sugar snap peas, and carrots.

Add the tofu from the first pan and stir fry for one additional minute.

Serve the rice and the tofu dish together. I usually put the rice in first, add some tofu, and then a few sprigs of cilantro, and mix it up.
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« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2007 02:35:31 PM »

That sounds sooo yummy!  I love the slightly sharp bite that comes from fresh ginger.  I wish I had the skill to pull off that recipe, but I am not a naturally talented cook.  If recipes have more than 4 ingredients my head starts swimming and I usually mess up (i.e. burn, forget key ingredient, or overcook) the meal. I seem to have a problem with more than one burner going at a time.   Undecided I end up neglecting something, oh well... I am a decent baker though. Cool

I used to practically live off those "Just add meat' Sauces in a jar.  The ones made for chicken and pork taste just fine with tofu (just check label for meat-derived ingredients).  I try to avoid them now though, since as a parent I have become a lot more conscious of preservatives, HFCS, MSG, sodium, and lots of other naughty things.

This is something I came up with (my son is allergic to peanuts, so I substitute Almond or Cashew Butter for him)  Yes there are more than 4 ingredients, so I personally have to prepare each thing separately and then mix them together at the end.  There is probably a better way to make this, but it is easy and fast for me and has been one of my 'staples' for years now.

Peanuty Tofu

Take 1 Block of firm tofu cut into small cubes
Take 1 package of asian stir fry veggies
Stir fry in canola (or another flavorless) oil until tofu is lightly browned and vegetables are still crisp
Remove from heat

Low sodium Soy sauce ( I use about 5 generous splashes)
Peanut butter (I use about 4 heaping tablespoons and prefer to use crunchy for the texture)
(I don't like spicy hot foods, but if you like Thai peanut satay, you may want to add red pepper flakes or chili powder).
Stir well in a BIG bowl

Boil 1 bundle of Soba noodles (usually there are 4 bundles per package, these buckwheat noodles hold up well, but you can use Ramen* or even regular spaghetti in a pinch**)  Do not use rice noodles - they are too fragile
Drain and add noodles to the BIG BOWL
Add stirfry mixture to the BIG BOWL
Stir until thoroughly coated
Stir fry an additional 3 minutes over HIGH heat
Ready to serve
(If you want to be fancy, throw some sesame seeds over each plate)

This dish tastes very good the next day for some reason, so make enough for leftovers!

I have made a slight variation on this recipe by marinating the tofu overnight in soy sauce or teriyaki (right in the plastic tub it comes in).  If you are new to tofu, you may want to do this - because it will add a lot of extra flavor.  Veteran tofu lovers are probably already accustomed to the texture and light taste of tofu so marinated tofu may be TOO salty tasting.

*if using ramen, use two packages (don't use the seasoning packets)
**if using Italian pasta, try to use spaghetti, angel hair, capellini, or another really skinny noodle  - I use between 6 and 8 oz or half a box.
« Last Edit: November 15, 2007 08:43:34 AM by JeepChick.net - Reason: sake of clarification » THIS ROCKS   Logged
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« Reply #14 on: November 14, 2007 10:57:15 PM »

Woo, thanks again everyone! So many delicious sounding recipes and wonderful advice. I appreciate it!
if you can get your hands on smoked tofu, you will be amazed.
i know my stepmom makes this tasty dish which is big slabs of tofu with a little slit in the side in which she shoves a very hefty amount of pesto. topped off with a homemade tomato sauce and some rice or pasta... yum! i can get you a recipe if you are interested.
I would be totally interested in that recipe if you feel inclined to post it! Cheesy

JeepChick.net - thanks so much for the recipes! That Peanuty Tofu sounds DELICIOUS and it's making me drool just thinking about it. I may have to try that this weekend!

"And in the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter, and sharing of pleasures. For in the dew of little things the heart finds it's morning, and is refreshed." - Kahlil Gibran
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« Reply #15 on: November 15, 2007 01:04:21 AM »

FYI- I tried the BBQ Tofu recipe I posted the other day- I used some Budweiser BBQ sauce (whatever, I can't resist anything with beer as an ingredient) instead of a natural kind- It came out almost unbearably salty. So maybe if you do the same thing I do- substitute the Braggs for some other liquid- or maybe water it down with some lemon juice or something.

« Reply #16 on: November 15, 2007 09:15:38 AM »

I like to put it in soups! I fry it (or buy the fried kind, but i prefer doing it myself), then dump it in whenever a soup calls for meat. It absorbs the flavor better, and because it's fried it doesn't break apart or get gross. Love!
I made some taco soup last week and threw it in, and my die-hard meat lover roommate decided that tofu was her new favorite food. :.)
Also, I can't wait to try some of these ideas on this thread!

"They sicken of the calm, who know the storm" -Dorothy Parker


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« Reply #17 on: November 17, 2007 01:41:51 PM »

i'd love to try that recipe for taco soup if you're willing to share olive_juice!

all of the recipes sound great!!

i'm gonna try it all ... eventually
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« Reply #18 on: November 17, 2007 05:25:48 PM »

I love tofu but I usually only eat it when I'm out because I'm in my first year of college (dorm = no kitchen) and before I moved out, my mom didn't cook much tofu for family dinners. But, for my brother's birthday she made vegetarian chili that was AMAZING. Instead of ground beef she added a soy substitute that has a similar consistency to ground beef. In the chili, I couldn't even tell the difference. Not tofu exactly, but soy nonetheless!

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« Reply #19 on: December 11, 2007 04:15:30 PM »

Make a tofu scramble!  Fantastic Foods (its a brand) has pre-mixed spices for it and it's usually pretty easy to find either in the health food section of your grocery store or your LHFS.  Anyway, I just took some firm tofu (drained of course) mixed in the spice mix and then in a pan with some veg oil, fried it up.  It's one of my favorite meals.  If you have a lot of spices in your kitchen, you can also look up loads of tofu scramble recipes online.  Here's a link to the Fantastic Foods website so you get an idea what to look for.  http://www.fantasticfoods.com/catalog/tofu-scrambler-p-61.html

Also, every time I introduce someone to how awesome tofu is, I take them to an Asian restaurant to try it, .  It definitely took me a while before I could cook with tofu and it was edible so keep trying!
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