Tuesday, July 24, 2007

"How to cook tofu & 2 Great Tofu Recipes!"

Cooking Tofu &
Some Tofu Recipes to help get you started!!!
So I started the day in Little Tokyo around 9:30am not really sure what I, Tofujii, should discover next about "Tofu." Since I am a Tofu, I really do not know how to "prepare" myself or my family members. So my curiosity pushed my to jump on the World Wide Web this morning and find out just how to "cook me and other like me," haha.

I found a website called "Ivillage" which features many interesting things about Tofu including "How to cook Tofu," "Nutrious facts about Tofu," "the flexibility and advantages of Tofu," and finally, "2 great Tofu Recipes." The general website is http://www.food.ivillage.com/ and the website featuring the article and recipes is www.food.ivillage.com/mainingredient/vegetarian/0,,308,00.html .

The Tofu article features a woman that asks a question about Tofu and the validity that it is "healthy for you."

Q: "Hi, I have heard tofu is really good for you. Do you have any suggestions for how to cook with it? Rebecca"

A: "Dear Rebecca, Tofu (soybean curd) is an excellent source of protein, calcium, iron, potassium, and even has a generous amount of fiber. It is low in saturated fat and sodium and is cholesterol-free making it heart healthy. These qualities and the versatile nature of tofu make it popular, especially among vegetarian chefs."

"From a cooking perspective, tofu itself is bland; it does however absorb the flavors of other ingredients that it comes in contact, making it extremely versatile. Another interesting feature of tofu: it may be eaten uncooked or cooked, meaning it can be great in a salad or a stir-fry.
Do note: tofu does not stand up to long periods of cooking, so when making a mixture, the tofu should be added at the last minute, heated through, and then removed from the heat. I have included my two favorite tofu recipes, a stir-fry and a main dish salad" (IVillage Website).

I as a Tofu, am so very proud of myself to be such a "low sodium," "heart-healthy" and "fexible and easy to prepare" food that can be paired with just about everything!!!

Also, there was even a paragraph that talks about the "prevention of stomach cancer, breat cancer, and tumors for humans and animals alike" when eating soy products such as Tofu, Miso (a Japanese based Soy bean curd), etc. I will post this info onto a separate blog that discusses about "Tofu and overal health."

I found the 2 recipes and the Tofu article under the "Food category" and under the "Vegitarian section." On this same page, you will also find a link entitled "How Soy-Savvy Are You?" which is a Soy Quiz!!! This "Soy Quiz" tests your knowledge of how much you know about "Soy."

I, Tofujii, dare you to take "the Soy challenge!!!" You just don't know how much there is to learn about Tofu and Soy!

The website reads "Soy is often called a "super food" because of its impressive nutritional profile. How much do you know about soy and what it can do for you? Test yourself now. by Lynn Grieger, R.D."

I think that this "Soy Test" is a very fun way to learn about the "healthy" things that soy products can do for you!!! (Please see my link above and simply click the link to begin playing). Arigatou (Thank you)!

Featuring Delicious Tofu Recipes: Let the Cooking begin!!!

~"Spicy Vegetable Tofu Stir Fry" ~

"For best results, marinade the tofu overnight. If however you are rushing, 20 minutes will suffice. I also enjoy the full list of vegetables; yet, if you don't have all items on hand - don't despair, simply use what is in your refrigerator. Finally, you can feel confident substituting dry spices: for example, you may use 1 teaspoon dried ginger instead of the fresh and 1/4 teaspoon chili powder instead of the minced chile peppers.

1/2 cup stock
2 tablespoons soy sauce
4 cloves minced garlic
1 tablespoon peeled minced ginger root
1 tablespoon minced chile peppers
1 cup cubed tofu
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 diced onion
1 red bell pepper, cut into strips
1 cup sliced carrots
1/4 cup sliced mushrooms
1 cup broccoli florets
1/2 cup cauliflower florets
1/2 cup peas
2 cups cooked rice

Mix together the stock, soy sauce, garlic, ginger root, and chile peppers in a small bowl. Add the tofu cubes and marinate, preferabbly 3 to 24 hours. Heat a large wok or frying pan over medium heat. Add the oil, onion, bell pepper, and carrots. Saute for five minutes. Remove the tofu from the marinade with a slotted spoon and add the marinade to the pan and cook for 2 minutes. Add the mushrooms, broccoli, cauliflower, and peas and cook for 1 minute. Add the tofu, cover, and cook until the vegetables are crisp tender, about 2-3 minutes. Serve over hot rice. "

~"My Favorite Tofu Salad"~

"This salad has a lovely oriental taste and a crunchy texture that compliments the softness of the tofu. For the best flavor marinate the tofu overnight in the marinade. Rice wine vinegar is a very mild vinegar that allows you to cut the amount of oil in recipes. If you do not have rice wine vinegar, use your favorite vinegar and double the amount of oil used (or to taste).

Tofu Marinade:
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 clove minced garlic
2 teaspoons sugar
black pepper
pinch ground anise (if you have it)
1 pound cubed tofu
Vegetable Marinade:
juice from 1/2 lemon
2 teaspoons canola oil
2 teaspoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons sugar
black pepper
2 julienned carrots
2 sliced celery stalks
1 cup shredded cabbage
1/4 cup sliced mushrooms
5 sliced scallions

Mix together all of the ingredients for the tofu marinade and refrigerate for at least three hours. Mix together the ingredients for the vegetable marinade and refrigerate for one hour. Gently toss the ingredients together and serve chilled. Best wishes, Wen Zientek"

*Please remember that these recipes are from the Ivillage Wesbite (not my own) and the creative chiefs who shared this information are mentioned above as well. All rights reserved.

This is Tofujii writing, so until next time, please don't ever stop thinking about Tofu, because the 2007 Tofu Festival is just around the corner!!!=)

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