Feed Yourself Smarter | Tofu Tips
Introducing more plant-based elements to your diet so I wanted to share some ideas on how you can use tofu (and its sister tempeh) and get the most flavour from it. Grate, marinade, coat and sauté it to make it as a topping or stirred through food
Tofu, Tempeh, How to Prepare Tofu, Plant Based Proteins, Soybeans



20 Jan 2022, Posted by Angela in FYS News
Cubed Tofu in a white bowl with a blue rim next to a bunch of herbs

I don’t know about you, but I used to find tofu really unappealing to cook at home. I just didn´t know what to do with it. In the past two years, I have started to find a new appreciation of tofu and I realise it’s all down to the way you prepare it.

I know a lot of people are introducing more plant-based elements to their diet so I thought I would share some ideas on how you can use tofu (and its sister tempeh) and get the most flavour from it.

Grate it
Take the block of tofu and grate it with a large cheese grater.  You can either add that straight into a casserole or soup type dish OR you can sauté it with lots of flavours (see below) and add it as a topping to your dish.

Marinade it
Tofu has very little flavour itself but it carries flavour very well. Marinating it before you cook it is a brilliant way to carry flavour into the dish.
Chop the tofu into cubes and marinate it, anything from 5 minutes up will work. You could do this in the morning and leave it in the fridge or you could just do it for 5 mins before you cook it. I recently marinated cubes of tofu in garlic, ginger, tamari, mirin and peanut butter – delicious!
Simply sauté the marinated tofu in some olive oil until it is golden brown and serve. I ate mine with stir-fried veggies and some brown rice.

Coat it 
If you have a veggie-based casserole and you want to add some plant-based protein to it, tofu works a treat. In this case, the casserole has probably got all the flavours you need, so to prepare your tofu pat it dry, chop it into cubes and then coat it; cornflour or bread crumbs work well. Then sauté as above in some olive oil until it is golden brown all over – that should take around 5 mins.

Tempeh vs tofu
Tofu is made from cooked soybeans which are then ground and the liquid is curdled. The curds are drained and pressed into a block.
Tempeh is made from soybeans which are cooked, fermented and then moulded into a block. You can often still see the shape of the beans in the tempeh. Other legumes, grains, nuts and seeds are often added.

I generally find tempeh is more flavoursome on its own, it has a kind of nutty flavour to it. I often bake or sauté the block of tempeh and then add it to roasted vegetables.  Basically, you don’t need to “do” so much to the tempeh to make something tasty.

Tempeh tends to have more fibre, a little more protein and more fats (both saturated and polyunsaturated) than tofu.

Eat your protein – wherever it comes from
Tofu and tempeh are brilliant examples of plant-based proteins. The great thing about these proteins from the soybean is that they are “complete” proteins i.e. they contain all the amino acids although the methionine is still quite low. For a reminder on this re-read my Protein Pointers blog http://feedyourselfsmarter.com/protein-pointers

Remember, we always need protein whether it is from plant or animal sources. I eat both. I call my diet “plant-based” because I eat a lot of food from plants but I also supplement that with high quality chicken, fish, eggs and other meat.

What are your tofu tips?
How do you cook tofu or tempeh?
I would love you to share your ideas and recipes or to hear from you if you try some of these tips. Either email me here or post on my Instagram.

In health and happiness

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