Beads, beads, beads, beads, more beads.... and a few observations about life and other things, too

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Friday, 24 January 2014

Spicy crusted tofu

 My son started gymnastics last summer, it's been great for him - and great for us, as I discovered a Chinese supermarket in the unit beneath the gym.  Their fresh tofu is amazing and has become our regular Saturday night meal.  We ate tofu fairly regularly before, but now I don't pass up the chance to grab some when we are there.  It's less than half the price of the tofu available in the supermarket.

This is my favourite way to cook it.


Block tofu cubed and dried as best you can.
3/4 tsp Garlic powder (granules do not produce the same result)
3/4 tsp Ground cumin
1 tbsp Soy sauce
2 - 3 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes
oil of your choice for frying (I wouldn't use olive oil)


Rinse and drain tofu.  Cut into small chunks and leave to drain sandwiched in kitchen paper.  It helps if it's as dry as possible.
Heat a tablepoon or two of oil in your frying pan and add tofu a few pieces at a time.  You may need to fry in two batches (once one is done pop them in a low oven to keep warm while you fry the remainder -  you can them add the tofu from the oven to the pan and the spices can be added all at once).

I add mine clockwise around the pan so I know the order to turn the pieces.  To start with I cook the tofu on a high heat to drive off the moisture.

Starting at the first pieces you put in, get some plastic tongs and start turning.  Work your way around the pan turning each piece carefully.  You may be able to put a fish-slice underneath a whole load of them and turn them, but this often results in broken up pieces.  Your choice.

At this stage you can turn the heat down - you don't want to burn it.  Keep turning the pieces until you have them nicely browned.

Doesn't that look good already?
Nows the time to add the spices.  I put them in a small dish to prevent the first spice burning while I faff about with the second jar.  If you have cooked your tofu in two batches, now is the time to reunite them in one pan.

Turn the heat right down to low and add the spices.  Shake pan tossing the tofu to distribute the powders.

Now add the soy sauce (shoyu is preferable, but use what you have - it will be delicious!).
I also put this in a dish - tipping a bottle of soy over the pan is a recipe for disaster for some of us...

Oops - I see I had a pan escapee!  Now shake that pan!  Toss the tofu over and over until everything is coated.  I usually have to retrieve pieces from all over the stove top at this stage.

Now shake in the first tablespoon of nutritional yeast - I use Engevita.

The heat under your pan should be minimal - shake/toss it again until the flakes 'disappear'.

Now add the second lot of nutri-yeast and shake/toss to coat evenly.

Now your tofu is deliciously crusted and ready to eat. 

My favourite way to enjoy it is to stuff a panini/ciabatta with tofu and mushrooms, roasted red peppers and some greenery - lamb's lettuce or cos.  So this was the end result.  Some sweet chilli sauce went in there too.  It was delicious!

Any questions or comments are welcome.

This recipe is adapted from Madhur Jaffrey's World Vegetarian - my most favourite cookery book.