Is there anybody in there?
Just nod if you can hear me…
Ok all Pink Floyd references aside, it has been a long time since I clicked “add new” to the post section of this here blog. It’s a pleasure to reacquaint myself with your company.
What have I been doing, you ask?
Making southern-fried tofu, of course:
I’ve also taken up piano. No, really! I have! I’ve brought back Sunday Lunch to VMHQ, read every spare second, bought more books from across the globe, watched every episode of Two Fat Ladies twice, holidayed at the beach, overnighted in the country, snuck Hotline Bling into innocently unsuspecting playlists, begun a Harvard coding course, tried desperately to rescue a stubbornly bare rosemary plant, and have I been busy in the kitchen or what.
In other words, I have been having a Very Nice Time.
I also continue to be maudlin at every given opportunity about my firstborn going to school. But that is a story for another day.
Today, it’s all about the tofu, my friends.
Now, regular readers would know I’m not a huge fan. I eat it, when it’s done right, but I don’t love it and there’s not many recipes on here that deal with it. However.
In my insatiable urge to clean out the freezer so I can actually put stuff in it, I’ve been slowly eating whatever is in there to make way for the new. In a fit of preserving productivity, a few months ago I threw in some firm silken tofu before it went bad, as I knew that freezing tofu and then defrosting it changes the texture and makes it less wobbly and watery. Except I’ve never bothered ever doing that before, no matter how much I had heard that it made the unpalatable actually very good.
See, look: no firm, stubborn, wobbly, watery, white blob:
I worried all day about having this defrosted tofu the centrepiece of the dinner, but I’m a frugal girl and I wasn’t going to waste it. I figured if it was really that bad after I’d worked my magic on it, well there was plenty of sides to tide us over and we’d scratch it up to a lesson learned.
I also figured that anything coated and deep fried is going to be far more delicious than baked or pan-fried so if we were starting behind the eight ball already with bland old tofu, and I was leery of the outcome, then dammit, I was going to deep-fry the sucker.
Friends, let me say I’m glad I did. I regret not making this tofu before today, and I’ve eaten a lot of shitty tofu in its stead. Man, even the word tofu is just one of those things that make you go hmmm but more with a sneer of confused disgust and less of the hammer pants and peace earrings.
If you’ve got some firm silken tofu (I like the one they sell at Costco, it’s great), chuck it in the freezer and make yourself some southern fried tofu. Put on some hammer pants if you want.
Now, if you’ll excuse me I am receding into some distant ship smoke on the horizon. Peace.Print
If you’ve got some firm silken tofu, chuck it in the freezer and make yourself some southern fried tofu. Put on some hammer pants if you want.
- 3–400g firm silken tofu, frozen and then defrosted
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon each garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, dried oregano, and black pepper
- 2 cups self-raising flour
- 3 Large eggs
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/2 teaspoon salt (extra)
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper (extra)
- Squeeze your defrosted tofu in your hands until you have wrung out most of the water.
- Place on a plate covered in a paper towel, cover the tofu in a paper towel, cover the lot with another plate, and place something heavy on the top so it can press the remaining water from the tofu. Leave for 1 hour at least.
- chop the tofu into strips or nugget-sized pieces and place in a bowl. Sprinkle over the salt, pepper, onion powder and garlic powder, or house seasoning (you can get the recipe from pauladeen.com) and toss to coat. You could also add some chicken-style broth or stock cube powder at this point (but cut back on the salt if you do).
- In a large bowl beat the eggs with the water, and in another large bowl, mix the extra salt and pepper into the self-raising flour. You could also add whatever herbs and spices you like here – I tend to use lots of pepper in my coating!
- Take the pieces of tofu and dip them into the egg, letting the excess run off, and then coat in the flour mixture. Dip once again into egg, and then into flour.
- Have your frying oil hot enough so that the tofu pieces sizzle and the oil bubbles around them when you put them in. I shallow-fried these in about an inch of oil in a regular frying pan, turning when the bottom was golden brown. They don’t need much cooking, as long as the coating is cooked through.
- Drain on paper towels and sprinkle with salt. Enjoy!
The more seasoning the better in the self-raising flour – don’t be shy now!
Adapted from Paula Deen’s The Lady and Sons Cookbook.