Stephen Ceideburg 7 oz Firm Chinese tofu
Oil for deep-frying Deep-fried tofu is used everywhere in Southeast Asia as a hot appetizer with a dipping sauce or as a meat substitute. The first step of pressing the tofu may not be necessary if your tofu is firm enough; just drain it thoroughly. Most Japanese-style tofu will have to be pressed. 1. Drain tofu cakes well. Wrap in a clean kitchen towel or several
thicknesses of paper towel, place in a plate set on a sheet pan, and invert another plate on top. Place a 1-pound weight (canned food, a cookbook, etc.) on the top plate. Let stand 30 minutes, unwrap, and drain. The tofu will have exuded a lot of liquid. The recipe may be prepared ahead of time to this point and refrigerated. 2. Slice pressed tofu into squares, triangles, or other shapes about 1/8
inch thick. Heat oil to 350 degrees F in a wok or other deep pan. Fry tofu pieces a few at a time until puffy and golden brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Serves 4 to 6 as an appetizer. From the California Culinary Academy's "Southeast Asian Cooking", Jay Harlow, published by the Chevron Chemical Company, 1987. ISBN 0-89721-098-0.