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Tofu. What Types are There and How Do You Use Them

Tofu. What Types are There and How Do You Use Them

Jun 26, 2023K. Dun

Tofu still doesn't have the best reputation outside of Asia, even though it is one of the most versatile and, above all, tastiest products! We always have different types of tofu in the fridge at home, so that there is always something in the house to make something delicious. But which types of tofu are actually available and what can you do with them? Here we try to list everything about tofu for you.

Tofu is made from soybeans. Soy milk is made from the soybeans, to which a substance is added that causes the soy milk to coagulate, and the curds separate from the 'whey'. Those curds are then pressed into a mold which makes the tofu. The longer you press the tofu, the more moisture you squeeze out and the firmer the tofu will become. With silken tofu, a substance is added to the soy milk so that the milk stiffens when you steam it, a bit like a crème brûlée.

Firm tofu
Tofu is called firm when most of the moisture has been squeezed out of it. Due to the firm structure, this tofu can take a lot. Where other tofu will fall apart if you stir too hard, firm tofu retains its shape well and is therefore ideal for stir-frying and deep-frying. Cut the tofu into cubes and stir-fry with your favourite seasonings. You can also fry the tofu until crispy before you stir it into the sauce in the wok.

If you crumble firm tofu and cover it with cornstarch, you can fry it in a wok over very high heat until crispy and it will have a bit of the texture of minced meat. Add soy sauce and oyster sauce for an almost meaty experience. You can also eat tofu raw, such as with the Indonesian gado gado. We sell fresh tofu as well as preserved tofu, fresh tofu has a much more organic texture than the packaged ones, but is still firm enough for stir-frying and deep-frying.

Pressed tofu
Slightly softer in texture is the pressed tofu. Where the texture of firm tofu can almost have something spongy, the pressed tofu that we sell has a silky soft structure. Slightly more porous than the really firm tofu, but you can also fry and stir-fry it well. You can actually use it anywhere you would use firm tofu, but it is a bit too soft to make 'minced meat'. It is also delicious when diced into small cubes in miso soup or in one of our favorite dishes: mapo tofu.

Silken tofu
As the name suggests, silk tofu is silky smooth and therefore the most fragile. It breaks down quickly, so it's best not to stir-fry it. Except if you want to make a vegan 'scrambled egg', for that it has the ideal creamy structure. Silken tofu can also be eaten raw and on a hot day, a block of tofu and a scoop of chili crisp is all you need. Or top your raw tofu with century egg pi dan, soy sauce, black vinegar, spring onion or a combination of all of those.

Prefer a warm dish? Always add the tofu last and be careful when stirring. Silken tofu is perfect as an addition to stews like Korean sunbudu jjigae. Not Asian, but you can also make delicious vegan mayonnaise with silken tofu. Put the tofu with some neutral oil, a dash of lemon juice, mustard, pepper and salt in the bowl and puree until you have a creamy mass.

Tofu for advanced
Have you already tried all of the above types of tofu? Then you are ready for advanced tofu. We also sell jars of fermented tofu, which are great in small batches for baking with vegetables or as a topping for congee. Or buy dried tofu sheets although they may look a bit strange. This is the skin that forms on the soy milk during the making of tofu and, according to some, the best part. Rehydrate it in hot water and use it in soups, stews or stir-fried dishes.

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