I discovered the secret to making crispy-on-the-outside/tempura-style silken tofu that you get in Japanese restaurants, without the actual deep-frying.
And the secret is... Panko, aka Japanese bread crumbs.
It's a revelation (if you like tofu, that is)!
Read on for the how to....
I came home from work yesterday and whipped up this colourful dish (with the help of my master-veggie chopping husband, of course), and we were both surprised by just how good it turned out.
I mean, we always cook well, but when it comes to inventing recipes, it's always a gamble.
Anyway this one is a keeper.
And I'm so excited to have finally learned how to make Japanese-style crispy silken tofu. After all, vegetarian food is so darn healthy, we need a little fried stuff too once in a while!
Crispy Pan-Fried Silken Tofu
1 block of extra-firm silken tofu (in other words, the firmest of the soft stuff), cut into large cubes
1/2 cup Panko flakes
1 Tbs flour
1 tsp salt
enough oil to cover the bottom of a frying pan
Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat.
Mix the panko, flour & salt in a shallow bowl, and place the egg in a separate bowl (lightly beaten).
Piece by piece, gently dip a tofu cube in egg, then in the panko mixture (rolling it around to cover each side). Then place in the hot frying pan. Repeat with the remaining cubes. Turn the tofu cubes gently so that each side turns a nice, golden brown. Then place on paper towels to drain off excess oil.
Sweet & Sour Sesame Soy Cabbage
1 onion, chopped
Approx 2 cups shredded purple cabbage
1 red bell pepper, cut into strips
3 medium (or 2 large) carrots, coarsely grated.
1 Tbs olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
3 Tbs sesame oil
3 Tbs soy sauce/tamari
1/3 cup Mirin
3 Tbs honey
2 Tbs rice vinegar
1/2 to 1 tsp cayenne pepper, to taste
sesame seeds for garnish
Saute the onion in olive oil until softened slightly. Then add the shredded cabbage and carrots and sesame oil. Saute over medium heat for about 5 minutes, then add the bell pepper and garlic. Add the remaining ingredients and continue to cook over gentle heat until the cabbage has softened.
Adjust seasoning to taste (It's hard for me to quantify exactly what I do when I cook, I'm always adding a little splash of this, a little dash of that... you have to have fun in the kitchen and trust your instincts!).
I served this with brown rice and a little arugula on the side, topped with cubes of crispy fried tofu and garnished with toasted sesame seeds. It was DELICIOUS!!