This Braised Tofu recipe is big on taste, and the beautiful blend of spices in the marinade perfectly complements the fried Tofu and vegetables. Plus it’s a very fast, easy and nutritious meal.
Spicy Braised Tofu
I love Tofu because it’s super versatile and easy to cook with. It adapts well to the flavors of sauces and marinades. That is why it’s very important to make a good marinade sauce base for your Tofu. If you are looking for a recipe that will get you hooked to Tofu, then you need to try this one – It’s rich, spicy and flavorful.
Whenever I want to use Tofu as a meat replacement in my meals, I always go for the extra firm tofu because it has the lowest moisture content then I fry it. Since Tofu is very soft, frying it will help hold it together in one piece, it will also give it a more ”meaty” texture and also help it to absorb the spices more effectively.
The key to achieving a crisp and meatier textured Tofu is to start with an extra firm or firm Tofu. Then remove as much moisture as you can from it to prevent splattering. Cut the Tofu into cubes, slices or sticks and fry over medium-high heat about 5 minutes on each side. A little more or less depending on the thickness of your slices.
Once the Tofu is fried, it will crisp up beautifully on the outside, and the interior will stay tender.
How to make Braised Tofu
- To make the braised Tofu, first, you need to remove the Tofu from the pack and rinse it. Be gentle because the Tofu is quite delicate.
- Pat the tofu dry with a paper towel and squeeze it gently to get as much water out as possible.
- Then cut it up into about a quarter-inch thickness and pan fry the Tofu in about three tablespoons of oil – about 5 minutes on each side. If you want it a bit crispier, you can fry for a little longer.
- While the Tofu if frying, you can prepare the sauce by mixing together the soy sauce, Red pepper flakes, stock and salt (optional) – Please read notes below.
- You will have a bit of oil left in the same pan used for frying the Tofu. In the same pan, add the diced Onions, Garlic and some of the green onions. I like to use more of the white part of the green onions at this point, and I save the green part for my garnishing. If you are not particular about garnishing just add all the green onions at this point.
- Once the onions are caramelized, stir in the snap peas for few seconds to about a minute. Then, add the prepared marinade and leave it to come to a boil.
- Stir in the Tofu and garnish with the green onions and sesame seeds.
- Braised Tofu tastes really good and it can be eaten as a stand-alone meal, or you can serve it over pasta, quinoa, rice, couscous or whatever suits you. It even tastes better the next day because the Tofu would have absorbed all the goodness of the marinade!
What Is Tofu?
Tofu is a form of cheese, and it’s also made from milk just like any other cheese. However, Tofu is not made from animal milk; rather, it’s made from plant milk called soybeans. It is rich in protein, it’s healthy, and it’s low in calories.
What does Tofu taste like?
Tofu has a very subtle taste this is what makes it adapt easily to the flavors of the marinades and sauces you put it in. If your marinade sauce is bland, the Tofu will turn out bland, and if your marinade sauce is delicious, the Tofu will turn out delicious.
Do you have to cook Tofu?
Tofu can be eaten raw because it has gone through a lot of boiling process before the tofu cords formed. You can crumble it in your salads, make scramble tofu (just like scrambled eggs), or blend it with your smoothies. However, if you want some texture in your Tofu, it’s best to fry it so that you can have that crisp skin.
How to store Tofu
- If the package is unopened, it will last in the fridge till the best before date.
- On the other hand, an already opened tofu should be kept inside an airtight storage container filled with water to the level of the tofu block and can be stored in the fridge for about a week.
- If the Tofu is already cooked, you can also store it in the fridge, but it is advisable to eat within two to three days.
- If you wish to store your Tofu for a more extended period of time, simply put it in a ziplock bag and freeze for up to 3 months. It should be able to last a little longer, but I will say 3 months is okay in order to stay safe.
You might also want to try out this breakfast Tofu scramble
Spicy Braised Tofu
- 1 tofu extra firm or firm
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 stalks green onion
- ½ cup onion minced
- 4 Tbsp sesame oil
- 1 Tsp sesame seed
For the Marinade Sauce
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- Salt optional
- 1 tablespoon red chili flakes
- 1/2- 3/4 cup stock
- Rinse Tofu and pat dry with a paper towel
- Cut the Tofu into about a quarter inch thick
- Preheat the oil and fry tofu. About 5 to 7 minutes on each side until browned
- Remove from heat and set aside
- Combine the soy sauce, Stock, Red chili flakes, and salt and set aside.
- In the leftover oil used for frying the Tofu, add the diced Onions, Garlic and Green Onions and cook until it becomes caramelized.
- Stir in the Snap peas and add the prepared marinade
- Once the marinade comes to a boil, add the Tofu and leave to simmer for a few minutes.
- Garnish with some green onions and sesame seed.
Any type of stock is fine. It all depends on your preference. Chicken, beef or vegetable, All will work well. The quantity of stock provided in this recipe is not exact because I know we all have our individual preferences. If you want more Sauce in your braised Tofu, feel free to add more stock and if you want less Sauce, add less stock. If you can't stand the heat, feel free to reduce the quantity of red chili flakes to your liking.
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If you make this Braised Tofu, I’d love to see pictures of your creations on Instagram and Facebook. #cheflolaskitchen