Let’s Talk Tofu: Easy Teriyaki Tofu Served Warm or Cold (Vegan & Gluten-Free)

There seems to be a stereotype surrounding vegans and vegetarians that they all love tofu.  Not true, right?  I don’t consume tofu often but when I do, I’m usually pleasantly surprised at how great it really is.  So versatile.  So inconspicuous.  So unassuming.  So healthy!

The debate many folks face with tofu is that too much of it is a bad thing, due to it’s phytoestrogen content.  Unfortunately, tofu has received some bad press in the past decade.  But if you look at the fact that people in Asian countries have been consuming tofu (soy) for thousands of years, how could you not see the good in it?
In doing my own research, I’ve found that more data proves the benefits of tofu outweigh the bad.  If we’re talking about non-GMO (genetically modified), organic tofu then we’re talking about pure heart-healthy soy protein.  Tofu also contains a significant amount of calcium and lowers LDL cholesterol levels.  The problem seems to lie in the fact that it’s easy to consume too much tofu as it’s found in many products.  Limited quantities seem to be the key.

If you want to find out more about tofu, check out: NYTimesNatural NewsCNN or Wikipedia.

I recently cooked up an incredible easy teriyaki tofu dish that made me happy as well as my kids!

Easy Teriyaki Tofu: Warm or Cold
(Vegan & Gluten-Free)
makes 4-6 servings

1 package (~1 lb.) extra-firm tofu, drained & cut into 1″ cubes
2 Tb. coconut oil*
1/4 C. arrowroot powder (in place of cornstarch)

For the Sauce:
1/4 C. tamari (instead of soy sauce)
3/4 C. water
2 Tb. honey (or use agave nectar)
1 Tb. fresh ginger root, minced
2 medium garlic cloves, minced

optional: 1 tsp. sesame seeds

Place kitchen or paper towels on top and bottom of uncut, drained tofu.
Place a heavy pan on top and let it sit for at least 10 minutes, pressing gently to remove excess water.

Add oil to medium to large sauté pan and heat over medium heat.

Place arrowroot powder in shallow bowl and toss cubed tofu in it so as to lightly coat all sides.

Add tofu to hot oil and stir so all sides are coated in oil.

Meanwhile, in a medium mixing bowl, whisk together tamari, water, honey, ginger and garlic.

Carefully pour sauce over hot tofu and stir gently.

Once all of the tofu cubes are browned and crispy on all sides, remove from heat.

Serve warm with steamed broccoli and sprinkle with sesame seeds or cold over a fresh salad.

*Have I told you how much I heart coconut oil?  It’s great for cooking, especially because it can withstand such high heat which makes it great for frying.  But I love it mostly because it’s so great to use as a moisturizer!  Use it on your body, your lips, nails, hair, to massage, for your feet, etc.  I slather this stuff on myself and my kids daily!  Trust me, your feet will thank you too.  (I’ve seen it recently at Trader Joe’s now FYI!)

Kid-Friendly Version: omit the sesame seeds (unless they like ’em!) and give them
a toothpick to eat each bite like an appetizer at a party.

Adult Version: use the leftovers on your salad the next day like I did!  Cold or warm, it’s great having something “meaty” to bite into to help fill you up.  
Vote for me in the Hot Raw Chef Contest underway now!
Mine’s the 1st one so you can’t miss it.  Thank you!

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