How to Cook Tofu

Tofu is essentially soya milk curd. It is high in protein, highly nutritious and is also low in calories.  It's a heavy food that can sometimes cause gas to soy-sensitive stomachs, so you may want to try small amounts of tofu at a time until you're sure your stomach can tolerate it. It's not difficult to learn how to cook tofu since it is such a versatile ingredient. You can buy tofu in the refrigerated section of your grocery store in several different forms.

Silken tofu is the easiest tofu to use for creamy desserts and dishes. It's perfect for layering between lasagna slices or for blending into a smoothie or cheesecake. It comes in a tub, nicely blended and precooked, and can be eaten straight from the container if you wish.

The firm blocks of tofu you buy packaged in water will need to be drained and pressed before cooked. You will want to pat your tofu dry with a paper towel, then slice the block into several pieces. Place the pieces of tofu on top of several paper towels and place several more paper towels on top of tofu. Then place something heavy on top of the tofu (for example, a cutting board and a tea kettle with some water in it) to extract any excess moisture. Let the tofu remain under pressure for 30 to 60 minutes before removing the weight and slicing the tofu into the shape and size desired.

There are many ways to cook tofu. Because tofu is almost tasteless and is very absorbent, it will take on the flavor of whatever sauce or marinade used. Many people like to marinade slices of tofu before broiling, baking or sautéing. You may also want to dip slices of tofu in flour and spices before frying, baking or broiling. The thinner the slices of tofu you use, the more flavor will be absorbed.

Tofu is wonderful in soups because it takes on the flavors of the broth. Simmering tofu in broth (even for use in other dishes) is a popular way of cooking this wonderful source of protein.

Whatever way you choose to cook it, you will find yourself reaping the benefits of tofu as you consume this highly nutritious soya product. If you've decided to go vegan or vegetarian, you will find tofu is one of the best sources of protein available for a non-animal protein diet.

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