Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Pan-Fried Marinated Tofu

Grilled or Pan-Fried Marinated Tofu

This is one of my favorite ways to eat tofu. Keep some marinating in the refrigerator, then grill or pan-fry at will.

For the marinade:

1 tablespoon Asian sesame oil
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons mirin (sweet Japanese rice wine)
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon minced or grated fresh ginger
1 teaspoon sugar
For the tofu:
1 pound firm tofu
1 tablespoon canola oil or peanut oil
Additional soy sauce or marinade for topping

1. Combine all of the marinade ingredients in a 2-quart bowl. Whisk together well.

2. Drain the tofu and pat dry with paper towels. Slice into 1/2-inch thick slabs, and blot each slab with paper towels. Add to the bowl with the marinade, and gently toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 15 minutes to an hour, or for up to a day.

3. To pan-fry the tofu, heat the oil over medium-high heat in a large, heavy nonstick skillet. When the oil is hot, add the tofu in one layer (you may have to do this in batches). Cook on one side for one to two minutes, until lightly colored. Using tongs, turn the tofu over and cook for another one to two minutes, or until lightly colored on the other side. Remove from the pan, and serve with additional marinade or soy sauce.

To grill the tofu, prepare a medium-hot grill. Brush the grill with oil, and grill until grill marks appear, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes per side. Remove from the heat, and serve with additional marinade or soy sauce.

Variation: For a spicy dish, add 1 teaspoon Asian chile sauce, such as sambal oelek, to the marinade.
Yield: Serves four

Advance preparation: Pan-fried or grilled tofu can be kept in the refrigerator and served hot or cold. It makes a good snack.