Sunday, January 25, 2015

Korean Barbecue Tofu

I can't wait to get this photo up!  This really makes a lovely presentation.  Please stayed tuned!

I haven't used tofu in years (one of the reasons I wanted to do my cookbook project) and this was one of my favorites and that hasn't changed.  Tofu is so incredibly versatile, affordable, and oh-so-good-for-you.  It's like a sponge and absorbs whatever flavors you blend into it or marinade it in.  From using the silken or soft tofu for salad dressings or desserts up to extra-firm tofu for dishes like this, it's hard to understand why it's not more prevalent.  I guess it seems too "hippy-ish" for the meat and potatoes folk I come from!

But back to this dish....I haven't made it for years, decades actually.  And it is every bit as delicious as I remember.  This book was published in 1982, a time when we weren't as conscience or informed about better nutritional choices (although we were evolving), so I made a few adjustments (using lower-sodium soy sauce, freshly minced garlic instead of garlic powder, and less amount of sugar - or substituting sucrolose).  Also, packaging amounts have changed (remember when a can of anything was a full 16 ounces and now it's 14, 14 1/2, or 15 ounces?) so I used the 14 oz tub of tofu.

One note:  if you try this, be sure to have your oven vent on high and a good splatter screen on hand!  Although I have almost eliminated the amount of oil originally called for, you still need a tiny bit, even in a non-stick pan, and when the soy-marinated tofu hits the hot pan, it will smoke and splatter!

For photo purposes, I served this on a plate of rice, but I actually prefer it on it's own.  I did saute some mushrooms and snow peas which not only look nice, but are a great accompaniment to the entree.

KOREAN BARBECUE TOFU (2-4 servings)\

Cut into 1/4 slices:

14 oz package of extra-firm tofu

Marinate at least 2 hours (overnight is best) in a mixture of:

1/4 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 Tbsp sugar or sucralose (Splenda)
1 tsp dry mustard
2 tsp freshly minced garlic, or 1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder

Heat a large non-stick skillet on medium to medium-high heat (#6 on my glass-top cooktop).  Brush the skillet with vegetable oil.  Cook each slice about 5 minutes per side (I like the edges a bit crusty).  If cooking all of the tofu at one time, you will need to split it into 2 or 3 batches.

Recipe Source:  Tofu Cookery by Louise Hagler, 1982, p. 81

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