Pan-Fried Tofu from Iron Chef Judy Joo
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There is something cleansing about eating tofu. It's low in calories, easy to digest, and packed full of protein—you really can’t go wrong.

In America, though, it's often overlooked as being tasteless, slimy, or just some kind of weird food for vegans and dairy-free peeps. It's also hidden a lot: blended into smoothies, mixed into desserts, and covered up in disguising sauces. Asia, conversely, celebrates tofu as a food in its own right without doctoring it up and trying to pass it off as some kind of strange derivative of meat.

Tofu can be beautiful and tasty when prepared in a way that showcases it. If you are already a tofu fan, you will love this pan-fried recipe for its bold flavors and simplicity. If you are a tofu hater, I hope you will try this recipe and be converted.

Pan-Fried Tofu with Korean Sesame Soy Glaze

Serves: 4 (two slices equals one serving)

Ingredients:
1 tablespoon Gochujang (Korean red chili paste)
2 tablespoons mirin
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon soy sauce or tamari
2 teaspoons dark roasted sesame oil
1 teaspoon roasted sesame seeds
1 clove garlic, minced
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1 block (14 ounces) fresh firm or extra-firm tofu, drained
1 tablespoon vegetable or canola oil
Black sesame seeds, for garnish
Sliced red chiles, for garnish (optional)

Directions:
1. Combine Gochujang, mirin, honey, soy sauce, sesame oil, roasted sesame seeds, garlic, and scallions, and set aside.
2. Slice tofu into 8 1/2-inch thick rectangles and set aside on paper towel-lined cookie sheet for 5 to 10 minutes until dry. Meanwhile, heat vegetable oil in a non-stick skillet or pan over medium-high heat. Fry tofu slices for 4 to 5 minutes on each side until golden-brown. Separate onto plates and spoon sesame soy glaze over tofu. Garnish with black sesame seeds and red chiles.

Nutrition score per serving: 215 calories, 15g fat (2g saturated), 11.5g carbs, 13g protein, 1.5g fiber

 

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