I’ve been meaning to blog about this recipe for a long time, because the world needs to know about it. Tofu gets a bad rep, but it’s all about what you put on it to make it taste great, and how you prepare it to give it a palatable texture. My favorite way to season tofu is with a breadcrumb-like mixture of nutritional yeast along with garlic powder and fresh black pepper. Nutritional yeast is a delicious and nutritious seasoning that is really popular for vegetarians and vegans. It has a great savory flavor that is almost cheese-like and a bit salty. Its addictive in the same way as Doritos. You can buy it in the bulk bin at Whole Foods. I realize this sounds crazy — something as weird as tofu topped with something that sounds nasty because it is called “nutritional yeast,” but I swear on my life that this is the most delicious tofu dish I’ve ever had. I’ve made it for many a tofu-doubter and I’ve yet to meet anyone who didn’t like this recipe.
1 block extra firm tofu
3/4 cups nutritional yeast
1 tbsp garlic powder
fresh ground black pepper to taste
dash of cayenne pepper (optional)
2 tbsp cooking oil
soy sauce for seasoning
-Serves 3-4 people
Heat the oil in the pan over medium heat. I like using cast iron pans. Prepare the spice mixture in a shallow bowl. Slice the tofu block in half lengthwise and then cut it into approx. 1/4 inch thick slices. The thinner you cut them, the crispier it will be, but not too thin otherwise it will break into pieces. Roll each piece of tofu in the seasoning mixture like you would with breadcrumbs, so its evenly coated . Many tofu recipes call for squeezing the water out of it prior to cooking, but in the case of this recipe, I find that the moisture helps the breading stick to it. Be sure the pan is evenly coated with the hot oil before placing the tofu in the pan. It should cook for about 5 minutes on each side, or until slightly crispy. I usually pour a little bit of soy sauce on this tofu once I’ve plated it — maybe a teaspoon or two, depending on how much I’m eating. Pro tip: I like to serve this crispy fried tofu as a side dish with pasta and marinara sauce, as well as a steamed green veggie. Serve as separate dishes or mix it all together in a bowl and top with parmesan cheese.
(Photos to come!)