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The Vegan Kitchen: Crispy Fried Tofu

Sometimes even vegans crave the toothiness of chicken strips on a salad or thin fried beef with your noodles and veggies. For years I tried to use tofu as a substitute, but it always came out soft and flavorless and would not produce a nice brown crust, no matter how long I fried it. Then I figured out why: the water in the tofu keeps it soft. Here is my recipe for fried tofu, which is mostly about producing the right texture and can be adapted to different flavorings. You will never look back at chicken or beef again….

Makes 3-4 servings

Prep and cooking time: 20 minutes

.

1 block firm or extra firm tofu, drained

1/8” vegetable oil to cover the bottom of the pan

1 clove chopped garlic (or to taste)

1 teaspoon grated/finely chopped ginger

juice of ½ lemon (1 lime or vinegar works as well)

1 Tbsp soy sauce

1 Tbsp water

1 teaspoon sugar

a dash of hot pepper flakes (optional)

  • Cut the block of tofu into four ½” slabs.
  • Place between paper towels and press out as much moisture as you can. This is the secret to excellent fried tofu.
  • Cut into bite sized pieces.
  • Sauté garlic and ginger in the oil for about 60 seconds
  • Add tofu and fry until golden, flipping the pieces when they have browned (it takes about 5 minutes per side).
  • Drain on paper towel if desired and return to the pan
  • Meanwhile mix lemon juice, soy sauce, water, sugar, and pepper flakes and microwave for 30 seconds. Adjust seasonings.
  • Pour it over the tofu and toss to combine

Serve the tofu as a protein alongside starches and vegetables, add to salads, or use in Asian dishes as a meat substitute. You can vary the thickness and size of the tofu pieces depending on how much crunch you like, and the flavors can be adjusted in many ways as well. Since tofu has a very mild flavor, I found that a combination of an acid like lemon juice and a salty ingredient like soy sauce works well. The fried tofu sucks up the liquid but the surface stays crunchy.

Copyright 2016 Eva-Maria Simms.

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One comment on “The Vegan Kitchen: Crispy Fried Tofu

  1. boom606
    March 12, 2016

    This is great

    Like

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This entry was posted on March 9, 2016 by in Health and Nutrition.
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