Foodie Friday: Stir-Fried Tofu

Stir-fried tofu: sizzling bean curd straight from the wok

Tofu is wonderful. Even back in 220 A.D., archeologists found pictures indicating the preparation of soy milk and tofu. It’s been suggested that tofu made its appearance in northern China during the Later Han Period.

Made from soy milk, tofu can range in texture. It’s absolutely silky when made fresh and feels refreshing eaten in cool blocks. It’s also a great source of protein, so you can substitute it for any kind of meat in a stir-fry dish. Since it’s bland, it tends to take up the flavors of the other ingredients surrounding it.

I recently tried a stir-fry dish that incorporated various textures in it: the softness of tofu, the crunchiness of bean sprouts, and the chewiness of seaweed strips (see photo below).

tofu dish

Tofu is one versatile food. Here are a few other ways I’ve had it:

  • Stuffed tofu: Pieces of tofu with a seafood filling (I made these with my mom as a kid; sometimes we used to stuff bell peppers with the same savory fish paste)
  • Stinky tofu: So smelly, but so good. I prefer getting mine straight from the street vendors. It’s fermented, so it’s got a strong kick to it.
  • Tofu fa: A dessert dish, soft like pudding. It’s combined with a sweet syrup with ginger flavor to balance out the sweetness.

I’ve mentioned on my blog before that I actually have a cookbook entirely devoted to tofu recipes. It’s got everything from tofu dressing to tofu tacos. (The only thing that didn’t work so well for me was tofu cheesecake. I guess you can’t expect it to really imitate cream cheese.)

What tofu dish have you tried?

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