1.09.2014

Tasty Tofu: 5 Yummy Ways to Include More Tofu Into Your Diet

Hey guys! Below is a guest post for you from Virginia Cunningham, all about the different ways you can ease tofu into your diet! I think she's got some pretty nifty ideas, so check it out!


When many think of tofu, they may not see it as having much personality, but it's bland appearance makes it deceptive!

Pressed curd extracted from ground soy beans, tofu has an almost endless variety of applications. It's high in protein -- more than 2 grams per ounce -- for some varieties, and contains an abundance of healthy fats. Besides the more common dishes tofu can be used in, like stir fry, it can be used in salad dressings, tacos and quesadillas, pesto, curry, marinade, desserts, smoothies and so much more! It's also an effective thickening agent, which makes it a great substitute for cream, eggs and cheese.

{Wanna learn a cool way to press tofu? Click here to see the pressed tofu I made!}

Here are some unique and simple ways to incorporate tofu into your diet:

Pumpkin Tofu Curry
I absolutely love pumpkin season and this recipe is delicious! To make this dish, saute an onion in olive oil then add 2 cups of vegetable broth, a can of coconut milk, a can of pumpkin (15 ounces), 2 tsps of both cumin and curry and pepper to taste.

Afterwards, mix up the cubed, sauteed tofu and enjoy. You can also add carrots and potatoes or any other veggie you’d like and serve over rice. Mmm delicious! This looks gorgeous, and really yummy, especially presented in an empty pumpkin shell, and it's also amazingly simple.  

Tofu Quesadillas
 No matter what time of the day it is, a warm quesadilla is a meal or snack I always crave. To make this, marinate strips of tofu for several hours (the marinade can be anything you like; I prefer to use olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, pepper and a splash of soy sauce), then broil (flipping once) until the edges are crispy. Throw them into a tortilla and add your favorite cheese, heated black beans (add some cumin and hot sauce to heat things up), then fold it all up and heat in an unoiled frying pan until the tortilla gets crispy and the cheese is melted! Absolutely delicious, and loaded with protein and fiber!  

As an alternative to marinating strips of tofu, try chopping it up into tiny tiny pieces, then saute at high temperature with onions, garlic and other spices. The consistency will end up resembling taco meat, which works incredibly well in a quesadilla or burrito.

Marinade
 Another one of my favorite ways to add tofu into my diet is to use extra firm tofu. Once you have pressed all of the water out, you can then make your own marinade with fresh pressed ginger and garlic, soy sauce, and a splash of spicy szechuan sauce. An easy way is to just pan fry it with veggies and sometimes veggie dumplings (I like the ones from Trader Joes... but will learn to make my own someday).

Tofu Fingers 
(similar to chicken fingers)
 For this snack, I use tofu that's been frozen. Once it’s thawed, slice it into triangles, rectangles or whatever shape you prefer. Next I dip them in egg, cover them with bread crumbs, cumin, garlic and onion powder, or whatever flavor I'm in the mood for, then bake them in the oven until the edges turn into a nice brown.

They taste great dipped in barbeque or honey mustard sauce or whatever you prefer. They have the texture of chicken fingers and are extremely tasty!

Salad Dressing
 This is one of the easiest ways I've found to use tofu. Purée silken tofu with basil and a clove of garlic, then drizzle on your salad and you're done!

The examples used above are great ways to incorporate this protein packed food into your diet. It absorbs the flavors of the ingredients it’s paired with, and works in a variety of cooking methods. It's amazingly versatile and adaptable nature makes it one of my favorite foods!

Virginia Cunningham is a health enthusiast and mother of three living in Southern California. As a health writer, and in collaboration with NorthWest, she loves being able to share recipes, fitness tips and educate others about their personal wellness. 


4 comments:

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