The husband loves tofu and is always up for trying new tofu recipes, but I have a fear of cooking tofu. I feel like it never comes out right, no matter how much I squeeze out the water or how I cut it up. I usually just crumble it up a bit and throw it in stir frys, but even then, I still am less than thrilled.
Where is that crispy on the outside, soft, almost creamy, on the inside texture I find in Thai restaurants? Why can't I recreate that at home? Do I really have to fry tofu to get that texture I crave?
Well, apparently not. I saw this recipe on Cara's Cravings recently and decided to give it a try. She mentioned some of my same frustrations, but then went on to describe her success at achieving crispy, yet creamy tofu. Well, let me tell you, she was right! This tofu came out wonderfully well! It had a nice crispy exterior and a soft interior, with a ton of flavor.
I made some modifications to Cara's recipe, including adding broccoli to make this a more filling meal. If you'd like to see her original recipe, check out Cara's Cravings. Don't be afraid of the maple syrup here; I thought it might be cloying and overly-sweet, but it just added a subtle hint of sweetness to round out the flavor profile.
Crispy Sesame Maple Ginger Tofu and Broccoli
Source: Adapted from Cara's Cravings
1 14-ounce block extra-firm water-packed tofu
2 small heads of broccoli, stems removed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground pepper
3 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
3 teaspoons sesame oil
3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
3 teaspoons cider vinegar
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
Squeeze the water out of the tofu and cut into 1" cubes.
Spray a 9 X 13" baking dish with nonstick cooking spray and add the tofu cubes; lightly spray the tofu with more nonstick cooking spray and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 10-12 minutes, or until the pieces of tofu are lightly browned. Turn the pieces over, and roast for another 10 minutes.
Whisk together the soy sauce, sesame oil, maple syrup and vinegar in a small bowl.
Cut the broccoli into small chunks.
Remove the tofu from the oven, and add the broccoli to the dish. Toss with the maple mixture, sesame seeds, ginger, and crushed red pepper.
Return to the oven and roast for another 5-10 minutes, turning once, until desired crispiness is reached.
Serve over brown rice.