Tofu

Tofu

Bean curd

By
From
Encyclopedia of Food and Cookery

Known as ‘tofu’ in Japan and ‘doufu’ in China and sometimes ‘the boneless meat of China’, bean curd is made from dried soybeans. High in protein, low in carbohydrates and cholesterol, bean curd generally has a bland nutty flavour, which is its strength. It is invaluable throughout Asia for absorbing the flavour of any dish to which it is added. It can be used in salads, stir-fries, soups and other healthy Asian dishes and is a great addition to a vegetarian diet.

To make bean curd, soybeans are soaked, skins removed then blended with water to make soy milk. Magnesium chloride is added to heated soy milk to separate the curds and whey. The curds are turned into many different forms: firm, soft silken puffs, sheets, fermented cakes and liquid. Pressed firm tofu is creamy in colour and comes in firm blocks; the softer silken firm tofu is fragile and also comes in blocks. It needs to be handled carefully. Puffed tofu has been cut into pieces and deep-fried; tempeh is fermented tofu with a nutty, smoky flavour made from cooked beans fermented with a mould until they form a chunky tasty bean cake. Bean curd also comes preserved in brine, sometimes flavoured with chilli or sesame oil.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
see method for ingredients

Method

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