Making tofu at home is not only fun and fairly easy, it gives you the most delicious tofu and can be used in a host of Asian recipes.
If you have made soy milk from our easy-to-follow guide to making soy milk, you are just a couple of simple steps away from making your own tofu at home. Then you can use your tofu in a host of amazing Asian recipes from Steamed Tofu with Snow Pea Shoots and Oyster Sauce to Miso Soup.
All you need to make tofu is soy milk and a coagulant. A coagulant is a salt, vinegar or acid that helps your soy milk to curdle and separate into curds and whey. You can use anything from Epsom salts (magnesium sulphate) to lemon juice to gypsum (calcium sulphate) to nigari flakes (magnesium chloride).
For this recipe, we will use lemon juice, but using nigari flakes, which can be bought from health food stores or online, will make a more silken style of tofu.
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 50 mins
1 litre of soymilk
1½ tablespoons of lemon juice
½ cup of water
1. Place soymilk into a large saucepan or pot, if you have a thermometer, heat up soymilk to 75ºC. If not, bring soymilk to the boil, then take it off the heat and allow to cool for about 3 minutes (just remember to stir constantly so it doesn’t form a skin on the bottom or bubble over).
2. Make coagulant by gently mixing lemon juice in the water.
3. Stir in half the coagulant liquid with a wooden spoon. Six good stirs in a circular direction will work. Then hold the spoon upright to stop the soymilk motion. Pour in the remaining coagulant, and stir in a very gentle figure eight motion to mix in all of the coagulant.
4. Cover the pot with a lid and allow the mixture to sit for 15-25 minutes until the soymilk has separated into curds and a liquid (whey).
5. Transfer the curds to a smaller container lined with a clean muslin cloth. The shape of this container will be the shape of the tofu, a cheap and easy one is a take-away container with holes in the bottom placed inside a larger container to allow for any drainage.
6. Wrap the cloth over the curds and place a weight on top for about 20-30 minutes to squeeze out the liquid.
7. Unwrap and remove the curds, which will now be your homemade tofu. It is a good idea to plunge the curds into very cool water for a few minutes to help it set further.
You can store tofu in a container filled with cold water in the fridge for about a week. Be sure to change the water each day. Or just use your tofu right away in delicious recipes such as Spicy Tofu Hot Pot or Agedashi Tofu.
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