Sunday, April 03, 2011

Tofu Mozzarella

Tofu mozzarella

My friend Sachiko explained how to make this fabulous vegan tofu 'mozzarella' dish over dinner on a recent visit from Japan.

Tofu Mozzarella

1 block silken tofu (must be silken)
Paper towels (4 piece long, unbroken)
Plastic wrap

1 heirloom tomato, chopped
handful of fresh basil, chopped
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Basalmic vinegar


  1. Start the morning before the day you wish to use it.
  2. Carefully rinse and drain the silken tofu, handling carefully as it breaks easily.
  3. Put an unbroken strip of about 4 paper towels on a plate.
  4. Carefully put the silken tofu on the paper towel strip, towards the beginning end.
  5. Lightly salt the tofu on all sides.
  6. Carefully wrap the tofu in the paper towel strip by rolling.
  7. Carefully wrap the paper towel encased tofu in plastic wrap.
  8. Place wrapped tofu on plate.
  9. Chill in refrigerator all day and overnight.
  10. The next morning, carefully take off the wrapping, and throw away the wet paper towels, reserving the plastic wrap.
  11. Carefully rewrap the now shrunken tofu block in another strip of 4 paper towels.
  12. Rewrap the paper towel encased tofu, put back on plate and into the refrigerator
  13. Just before serving in the evening, take it out, remove all wrapping, place on plate.
  14. You can leave it whole and pour on the sauce, or did as above and slice it in thin slices and spread out slightly so more sauce is absorbed.
  15. Pour the sauce over the tofu and serve.
Sauce Directions

  1. Combine chopped tomato and basil in a plastic bag that zips tight.
  2. Pour in EVOO and balsamic vinegar.
  3. Let sit 30 minutes.
  4. Pour over the sliced tofu.
Alternatively, you can put the freshly chopped tomato and basil over the tofu, then drizzle on the EVOO and balsamic vinegar.  The pictured dish uses the baggie approach as I took the dish to a birthday party to share and the bagged approach made transport and assembly easier.

I also think that this 'cured' tofu would take to other sauces well.  It has the consistency of fresh mozzarella cheese, very tender and mild.  I'm thinking of trying a miso/sesame sauce over it for example.

What I've been up to lately

I had a great evening with my friend who writes Zoomie Station having dinner at Harmony in Mill Valley and attending Michael Pollan's "Sun Food Agenda" at the Marin Civic Center on March 24.  He is entertaining and informative (as expected) and worth the effort to procure tickets and move yourself to where ever he is speaking within a reasonable distance of you.

I take my reporting for food news for Bread and Butter for the Marin IJ seriously but with a light hearted pen, and do a lot of research for each column, which lessens my time to blog all the cool finds I come across.  I feel lucky to live in Marin where there are always new and cool things percolating up to the surface.

I have had numerous computer glitches, failures and other disasters, the most recent being a near loss of the back up and only copy of files on a computer that failed.  So it was no longer the back up, but the primary storage.  It failed, and my friends at Drive Savers recovered 90%, and I picked it up with my $2100 miniature flashlight last Wednesday.  Now I'm making back ups of my back ups as I don't need any  more $2100 recoveries even if they come with a cute flashlight.  Naturally it had my photos, so now I can work on posting some cool finds in between my journalistic research and other life activities.