If you have read yesterday’s post, you would know that I’ve been a veg for over half my life. I’ve eaten my share of tofu. Baked, broiled, grilled, sauteed, crumbled, buffalo – you name it, I’ve probably tried it. HOWEVER, my absolute favorite way is the recipe you will find below. You’re in luck: it’s simple, fast, and friggin’ delicious. It’s even been omnivore approved: my entire family likes it (even my aunt will text me: “honey, what is that tofu recipe again?”), and my friends who previously turned their noses up at my “weird veggie sh*t” will devour the entire baking tray of this tofu. Without further ado, here’s what you do:
The Best Damn Baked Tofu Ever
1 16 oz package of extra firm tofu, diced
1 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp rice vinegar
1 tsp minced garlic, or fresh ginger or both
1. If you can buy diced tofu, do it – it just makes life simpler. If not, cut up your tofu block into 1″ cubes. Drain well. This is the most important step: the better you drain the tofu, the more the marinade is allowed to soak in. Tofu is like a sponge, it comes packed in water to keep it fresh, but if you want it to taste great, squeezing all the extra water out is a must. I usually make a paper towel sandwich on a dinner plate for the tofu draining process. I place a square or two of paper towel on a plate, place the tofu on the paper towel; then, add another paper towel on top of the tofu, and a second plate. I put a 5 lbs barbell on top of the second plate but you can use whatever is handy: a can of tomatoes, a bottle of vodka, The Origin of Species, whatev.
2. Once the tofu is well drained (you should drain for at least 15 minutes, but I have been known to allow my tofu to drain for an entire episode of Scandal), place it into a seal-able plastic bag (ziploc) or shallow container. Whisk all the marinade ingredients together in a bowl and pour over top of the tofu. If your tofu is in a bag, great! You can “massage” the marinade right into the tofu; if it’s in a container then toss the tofu until it is well coated in the marinade.
3. Allow the tofu to marinade for at least one hour, I almost always allow my tofu to marinade overnight. It tastes better that way.
4. Once the tofu has soaked up all the goodness, place the diced pieces in single layer on a baking sheet. Try to spread them out as much as possible, it allows the tofu to cook evenly on all sides. Bake at 350 F for 25 – 35 minutes. You want the tofu to appear lightly browned.
5. I’ve personally never done this, but I heard a rumor that you can toss the cubes in cornmeal when they are hot out of the oven for a crispy texture. Once cooled, store in an airtight container and it will keep in the fridge for about a week. Enjoy!
I’m not gonna lie – the bag pictured above is currently sitting in my refrigerator to be baked tonight. Stay tuned for a pic of the final product tomorrow 🙂 I make this recipe weekly, double it, and use the baked tofu to top my salads for an extra protein boost (and to fight off the 3 pm hangry). I eat it right out of the fridge, use it to top sauteed veggies, salads, as a side dish, reheat in the microwave and put on any leftovers I have. It’s so versatile, so easy, and even SO good by itself! It’s the best damn tofu ever.
I hope you agree. Happy baking!