Saturday, 14 July 2018

Tofu marinade ~ and baked vegetables


Oops!  I see I published this by mistake, when it was still at the point of being Notes to Myself!  Oh well, since it's there it might as well stay there and I'll tidy it up sometime soon! 

The marinade is a very good way of preparing tofu and raises it from the status of what many people consider to be a strange white mass to really delicious food!  I don't object at all to a good quality tofu being simply heated in combination with other ingredients of a stir fry but this really does vastly improve it, and I wish I'd learnt how to do this years ago - hats off to you, Gary, and thank you!!!

As I've said before, the best place I know of to buy tofu - most delicious, very reasonably priced, and made on the premises, is Asian Groceries, in South Dunedin, which I've written about here.
They also stock lots of intesting beans and grains, including cornmeal (polenta or congrits) in varying degrees of fineness. 

For the marinade I use:
Ratios of
Kikkomen or soy sauce - 2 Tablespoons
Cider vinegar or lemon juice - 1 Tablespoon

Gary in addition uses 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of sesame oil.
Minced fresh ginger is also good.
Chopped chilli can be added for those who want it hot!

Method:
Mix marinade and set to one side
Tofu holds quite a bit of water which can be pressed out of it - gently.  To remove the excess wrap the tofu in paper towels, which you may wish to replace a number of times
Place these parcels onto a flat surface such as a board or plate, place a flat board or plate on top of them, and weight these surfaces, say with a block of cheese, or pound of butter, etc.
Change the paper towels every ten minutes.
Once this has been completed the tofu will have become quite a bit drier and somewhat porous, although it might not look like it.  The drier it is the more quickly it will be able to take up the marinade.     
Cube the tofu into the sized pieces that you like and place into a flatish dish or plate and pour the marinade over it.
Leave it to stand from ten minutes to one hour, forking it over from time to time.
Add more lemon if needed.
Consider coating with sesame seeds before putting into the oven.
Dry roast 2 Tablespoons of sesame seeds until lightly brown.  Put in pestle and mortar.  Grind until about half of them are ground, which give a lot of flavour.
Coat the tofu with them and or stir in with the veggies.
Cook for ten minues and then add tofu and cook for another ten minutes, no longer, otherwise it may become too dry.

Vegetables
Vegetables cut to be ready at the same time - including the onion.
Quantity of raw of raw vegetables quite a bit bigger than when baked.
Baked veges:
Cauliflower - as main veg - in clumps anad lengthwise slices
Cut onions (halve them and then thickly slice across)
Tomatoes - halved
Mushrooms - whole
Walnuts
Garlic
Note - don't use powdered spices.
Cumin - whole seed - 1 Tablesppon - to go with chilli
Thyme
Consider fennel seed or dried chilli
Alternatives:
Olives
Add fresh basil at the end
Chilli
If serving with potato add dill or fennel
Think of courgettes (halved horizontally or sliced)
Toss with juice of half a lemon and soy sauce - optional but good wiht mushrooms - approx 1 - 2 Tablespoons
Combination of mushroom, thyme and walnuts is good.
Preheat oven to 160 - 180 fan bake, and bake for 15 - 20 minutes

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