Baked Tofu

tofu
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Total Time 120 min
Prep 30 min, Cook 90 min
Servings 6 servings (52 calories each)

Baking tofu gives it a more substantial texture and allows the marinade to really sink in. It's important that you remove as much water as possible before baking so the tofu can crisp up instead of becoming soft. Baked marinated tofu can be eaten as is or put into other dishes such as stir fries, salads, and even tacos.

Tofu is a very good source of calcium, protein, and iron and contains all 8 essential amino acids. Keep in mind the calorie count here is for the tofu only.

Ingredients

  • l pound firm or extra-firm tofu (not silken)
  • Your favorite marinade recipe

Preparation

  1. Drain the water off of the tofu. Cut the block into 4 to 6 slices.
  2. Spread the slices on half of a clean, smooth (not terry cloth) kitchen towel, which is laid over a terry cloth towel. Fold the towels over the tofu. Place a cutting board over the towel-wrapped slices, and put something heavy on top (like a cast-iron skillet). Press the slices for 20 to 30 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, prepare your marinade.
  4. If you want to make bite-sized cubes, cut each slice into 12 pieces and place in marinade. If you prefer to keep as slices, put the slices into the marinade. The longer the tofu remains in the marinade, the more flavorful it will be (30 minutes is the minimum).
  1. Once the tofu is marinated, arrange the cubes or slices on oiled cookie sheets and bake in the oven. If you have the time, bake at 275 F to 300 F for a longer period of time, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. The slower the tofu bakes, the better the texture. If you don’t have that much time, bake at 350 F for 30 to 45 minutes.
  2. When the tofu cubes begin to look dry on top and are browning, turn them over. You may have to turn slices over several times to make sure they are fully baked. The goal here is to bake out most of the moisture. 

Ingredient Substitutions and Cooking Tips

Although Asian-inspired marinades go beautifully with tofu, other flavor combinations also work well. Think tastes of the Southwest and marinate the tofu with freshly squeezed lime juice, onion, cilantro, garlic, and a little jalapeno (perfect in a soft taco). Mimic a paneer cheese Indian dish and add garam masala and coriander to the marinade (this cheese and tofu have a very similar texture and mild flavor).

You can increase the recipe and freeze the extra baked slices; thaw them later to add to salad, or to rice and stir-fried vegetables. Feel free to cut some tofu as slices and some as cubes before you freeze them so you have the option when you plan dinner.

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