Tofu Basics

April 2, 2014
Tofu Basics

Tofu is like a sponge. It readily absorbs the flavours of the foods, sauces and seasonings it’s cooked with. This makes tofu an ingredient that can easily be added into some of your favourite recipes, either by substituting dairy and animal products, or complementing them for an added health boost.

Handling Tofu:

  • Be sure to drain the excess water from your tofu before using it. Medium Firm tofu should be patted dry with a paper towel.
  • Do not over-cook. This will make the tofu dry and tough.
  • Marinate your tofu in a glass or enamel dish. A metal dish may leave an unpleasant taste.

Storing Tofu:

  • Tofu is perishable and must be kept refrigerated.
  • After tofu is opened, store the unused portion in the fridge, where it will stay fresh for 3-4 days. Medium and Firm varieties can be wrapped in plastic wrap or placed in a plastic container.  Soft and Dessert varieties can be covered in plastic wrap and stored in the original container.

Different Types of Tofu:

Generally speaking, tofu is defined by how much water it contains. The softer the texture, the more water it contains, and vice versa. Different types of tofu are also best prepared differently.

  • Extra Firm:
    • Cube, slice or crumble. Ideal for grilling or stir frying. Use in dishes where you want tofu to maintain its shape.
  • Firm:
    • Cube, slice or crumble. Ideal for crumbling in dishes such as lasagna, chili, spaghetti sauce and tacos.
  • Medium Firm:
    • Cube, slice, mash or pureé. Ideal for use in soups, dips, and casseroles. Use mashed for vegan scrambled eggs.
  • Soft:
    • Blend or pureé. Ideal for use in soups, dips, sauces, dressings or smoothies.