Hi guys! It’s the beginning of the month which means a new article on cooking with tofu is due. As you might remember, I started this cooking with tofu series last month and I promised to explain at least 3 types of ways of cooking with this mysterious ingredient that looks very bland and can be very bland if not cooked properly.
Last time we talked about the different types of tofu, from silken to extra firm and I showed you one recipe with soft tofu. I cooked mapo tofu which is one of my favorite go-to dishes whenever I don’t feel like cooking much. In today’s article, I will be using firm tofu and I will show you two different ways of using it. However, before we get into the recipes I want to quickly remind you the basics on how to properly prep tofu when you are cooking with it.
Tofu has a lot of water and so, you need to drain it out. Otherwise, it won’t have as much flavor as it can. To do so, there are several techniques:
- Basic technique, no need for anything particular : Two plates and paper towels. Wrap the tofu in the paper towels and place it in one of the plates. Put the second plate on top and press it. You need to put weight otherwise the water won’t be absorbed by the paper towels. I usually leave the tofu like this for at least 20-30 minutes. The longer, the better.
- Tofu presser : A tofu presser is a good option if you don’t want to use paper towels CONSTANTLY and you are in more of a zero-waste mindset. It does require you to buy one, but right now there are many options out there (here, here). It is an investment but I use it all the time and it is quite nice.
It needs to absorbe flavor! Some of my favorite marinates: soy, spicy sauces (sriracha, gochujang, chili flakes), vinegar based marinades, teriyaki, …). Leave the tofu marinating for as long as you want. Same rules applies here: the longer, the better. You can also freeze the tofu and leave it with the marinade. It’s going to taste really great after.
Now, onto the recipes of the day:
Baked potatoes with tofu (Instant Pot)
For the potatoes:
- I used very small potatoes for this recipe because it’s the only ones they had at the supermarket, so I used 4 small potatoes per person
- 1 and 1/2 cups of water
- Salt & Pepper to taste
For the filling:
- 1 onion (medium)
- 1 cup of mushrooms (dices)
- 300g of tofu
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- 1/2 tablespoon of oregano
- 1/2 tablespoon of basilic
- 1 cup of tomato sauce
- 1 cup of veggie broth
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- Cheese (optional)
- Pierce the potatoes with a fork and place them in the instant pot rack
- Add the cups of water.
- Close the lid, put the vent to “pressure” and then select “pressure cooker”. Set timer to 15 minutes.
The instant pot will take around 10 minutes to reach pressure, then the timer will start. Once the timer goes off, start preparing the filling while the IP does the natural release.
- Cut the onion & the garlic. Set aside.
- Cut the tofu in dices (I did not marinate my tofu, but if you wish to do so, you can do it with the spices and the tomato sauce I will use later)
- Cut the mushrooms and set aside.
Once this mise en place has been done, check how long the IP has been doing the natural release. Since I was multitasking as I was doing my mise en place, it took me around 13 minutes to have everything ready. At that point, I released the pressure that was in the IP by turning the vent open, and then I took out the potatoes and placed them in a plate.
I then continued cooking the filling in the IP.
- Set IP to “sauté”. Add the olive oil and once hot add the bowl of onion and garlic. Cook for 3 minutes
- If you have not marinated your tofu, add it now and cook for 1 minute while mixing well. If you have marinated it, add it at the last step.
- Add the mushrooms and mix well.
- If you have not marinated the tofu, this is where you add the spices & the tomato sauce and the extra cup of vegetable broth. If your tofu is marinated, you will have had done this with the spices, tomato sauce so you will add the marinated tofu now with the extra cup of veggie broth.
- Close the lid, put the vent to “pressure” and then select “pressure cooker”. Set timer to 3 minutes.
Once the timer goes off, do 5 minute NR then QR. Add some butter on top of the potatoes, cover with tons of filling and add cheese if you wish so!
- 300g of tofu
- 2 tablespoons of soy milk (optional)
- Butter (vegan) or olive oil
- Spices: There are two ways of doing this tofu, the “spicy” way and the not so “spicy way”. If you have been reading the blog, you may already know that I always go the spicy way, but since this is a breakfast type of tofu dish, I can understand it might not be everyone’s cup of tea.
- Spicy way: 1 to 2 tablespoons of curry spices (I used dahl curry). If you want more yellow-ish color, add more curry but be careful, it might too overpowering and strong.
- Not so spicy way: 1/2 tablespoon of paprika and 1/2 tablespoon of turmeric.
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Reheat either butter or olive oil in a non-sticky pan.
- Add the pre-drained tofu. I cut my tofu in dices and then I used a wooden spoon to give it the “scramble effect”. Cook for 3 minutes at medium heat.
- Add the spice mix of your choice and mix well. The tofu will start getting some color.
- If you want the “runny” egg feeling, add the tablespoons of soy milk. This will give moisture to the tofu.
- Cook for 4 more minutes at low temperature and voilà. Don’t let the tofu get “brown”.
I served my scrambled eggs with my usual “lazy version” of an english breakfast. If you want to try my old recipe of english breakfast but make it vegan, you can now do it with my scrambled tofu recipe!
This is the second part of my tofu series and there is still one article left! The next one will feature one of my favorite ways of using tofu. What is your favorite way of eating tofu? Do you like it more on the soft side for soups, or do you prefer its firmer version for uses like the ones in this post? Tell me all about in the comments and be sure to follow me if you don’t want to miss it out on the next post!