Regular tofu has a somewhat spongy texture, and comes in several varieties distinguished by how much water is pressed out. It contains a lot of water in it. Though naturally it doesn’t contain any flavors but flavors can be added according to the recipe.
Freezing a regular tofu, it will be expanded with a lot of water but inside it still remains the same.
This type of tofu is used primarily in Asian dishes. It is a
little more compact than silken but still soft. Regular tofu easily soaks up
the flavors of sauces and broths and so is often used in noodle soups and
stews. You can also make delicious spreads using regular tofu, or ‘scrambled’
tofu, a vegetarian takes on scrambled eggs. Don’t pan-fry or deep-fry regular
tofu as it is likely to crumble.
Tips for Working with Regular Tofu:
- Drain the Water: Tofu
contains a lot of water in it, and water and oil do not mix. If you don’t drain
your tofu before putting it into hot oil, you will cause some serious oil
splattering. Also, your tofu will never get a crispy exterior. To drain the
tofu, put it between two plates with a weight (such as a can) on top, and tilt
the plates a bit so the water can drain out. Or just squeeze excess water out
using your hands.
- Add Flavor: Tofu
does not have any flavor to it. You’ve got to add the flavor to tofu when
preparing it. One way is to marinade the tofu before preparing it. I also love
to simmer tofu in a flavorful liquid such as tomato juice or coconut milk. The
tofu will absorb the liquid and take on its flavor. Or just go crazy with the
seasonings, just be warned that they will only be on the outside of the tofu
and won’t penetrate into the inside.
- Freeze Tofu: If
you put tofu in the freezer, the water in it will expand. When the tofu is
thawed, you will be left with lots of air pockets. This changes the texture of
the tofu completely and makes it spongier and more interesting.