Thursday, July 14, 2011

What is it About Tofu? CEiMB

This week, Liz of This Chihuahua Wears Pearls chose Stir-Fried Chinese Cabbage with Tofu on page 221 of Small Changes, Big Results. If you don't know Liz, click above and visit her.  You will make a new friend .  You will get some good recipes.  It is worth the click from your mouse.

I had mixed feelings when I saw this because, I have had no success, with Tofu.  No matter, what I have done to it, it seems to be tasteless.  Decisions, decisions, decisions - what do I do?  I am a big Ellie fan, and I owe it to Liz to give this a shot. 

For a change, I made sure, I had everything and I did, well almost.  This is not "a bash hubby" post but I have to blame someone, so why not the man that gives meaning to life.  Hubby did me a favor and picked up the bok choy and brought home a tiny bunch - really tiny.  I knew this would not be enough for one of us, let alone two but I was determined and I figured that a big, no huge salad, would make up for the lack of the stir-fry.  We didn't get that far.

I did not realize, the time that went into the recipe and started too late to have it ready for "dinner time."  That is a laughable term since we eat at different hours, each evening.  It depends when hubby arrives home.  It didn't matter, I was running way behind.  How did I miss the thirty minute marinade and the 20-25 minute bake?  That is not yet including other steps in the prep work.  Yes, dinner was going to be very late.

I got my act together and prepared the tofu and put it in the refrigerator.  While it marinated, I cooked the bok choy, scallions and ginger.  That cooked, I even had a few minutes to sit down.  When, I returned, I moved right along and I had hope for this meal.  Everything continued to go well and finally, I put it in the oven and asked my husband, to call me when the timer went off.  I raced to my computer and ended up folding wash, instead, like a good wife and mother.

I still had a few minutes and hubby was watching over the tofu so I did get some typing in.  When I looked up, I was a little late for the timer but knowing the man, I was not worried; he would remove it from the oven.  He always does when  he hears the timer, even when it is a cake that is still liquid.  This time, he forgot and did not.

I opened the oven and there sat a bunch of little blackened blobs.  I am filled with praise for myself for taking this so well.  I did not raise my voice.  I did not throw things.  No windows broken.  Plates all intact.  Nothing torn.  Nothing jumped on.  Oh, I don't do those things, normally.  Anyway, my home was standing, thankfully and I carefully took out the burnt tofu, mixed it with the bok choy and a little soy sauce and ate the entire bowl.  I did not offer any to hubby.  How could I give the good man burnt food?

Are you ready?  I liked it despite it being burnt.  The tofu was camouflaged  perfectly with the seared stuff and some brown pieces.  All the tofu shrank and was less then half the size.  It was still good.

My advice to you who think you don't like tofu:  If you would like to add it to your repertoire of recipes, BURN it.

This is Ellie's recipe, below. I am not changing it to accommodate my substitutions or different baking time.  Groan.

Stir-Fried Chinese Cabbage with Tofu
3 small bunches bok choy (about 1 pound)
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon peeled and grated ginger
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/3 cup chopped scallion
1 pound cooked, marinated tofu cubes (recipe to follow or buy store-bought)
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon sesame seeds

Cut 1 inch off the bottom of bok choy and wash the separated stalks. Chop the bok choy crosswise into 1/2-inch-wide strips.

Heat the oil in a wok or large deep skillet over a medium flame. Add the ginger and garlic and cook for 15 seconds, stirring constantly. Add the scallion and bok choy. Raise the heat to high and cook, stirring occasionally, for five minutes.

Stir in the tofu, soy sauce, 1/4 cup water and cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid is reduced slightly and the tofu is warmed, about 2 minutes. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Marinated Tofu
1 pound extra-firm tofu
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon orange juice
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon canola oil
cooking spray

Slice the tofu into 1/2-inch-thick slabs and lay the slices on top of paper towels. Use more paper towels to firmly pat the tofu in order to remove as much of the water as possible. This should take about 3 paper towels and 2 minutes. Cut the tofu into cubes.

In a medium bowl, combine soy sauce, orange juice, sesame oil, and canola oil. Add the tofu cubes and toss gently. Cover and let the tofu marinate in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes and up to 24 hours.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Spray a large shallow baking dish with cooking spray. Place the tofu in a single layer in the baking dish. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until golden brown.   Mix with bok choy.

 If you are ready, here it is.........

Frugal Follies Thursday
 Delightfully Inspiring Thursday Link Party
Share Your Awesomeness Thursdays


  1. This really sounds delicious. I'm usually not a fan of tofu as a stand alone but I think your version will work nicely. Have a great day. Blessings...Mary

  2. Too funny! I actually enjoy tofu, but your way sounds good, too. Because tofu absorbs other flavors so well, it's always a good idea to marinate it well, and Ellie's method of marinating then roasting is one of the best ways to eat it. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Your right - the more tofu is cooked, the better it gets, even burnt. :)

  4. How funny!! I think that may be only way I would eat Tofu!! LOL

    AM actually doing mine with chicken. I was attacked by a giant tofu and still have the scars!!!

    Love it when bad things turn out well, almost!!

  5. Oh, Chaya, thank you for your kind words and for cooking along with me this week. I'm glad you gave it a shot despite previous tofu dislike! I am so glad you enjoyed this one, even with the kitchen blunders. I enjoyed the tofu and the bok choy, just wish the sauce was a little more flavorful overall, but I will definitely try burning my tofu a bit next time to get even more flavor out of it!

  6. Hi Chaya,
    I love your post and I love tofu too.Perhaps I need to try another way next time...the Burn Tofu.. ha ha ha!

  7. I've never tried burnt tofu before! You definitely bring it to a whole new level of eating tofu! Hehehe! Sometimes we need days like this just to perk us up, otherwise how would you discovered your new favourite "burnt tofu cuisine"? :) Love it!


Your comments are a part of making my day bright and shiny. I value your advice, criticism and viewpoints.