On my search for tofu in supermarkets, I have yet to find any that doesn’t come wrapped in plastic. Whilst tofu is a more eco-friendly option than buying meat, it’s a shame that it can’t be found not packaged in single-use plastic.
Making regular soy-based tofu at home can be a bit of an ache but I have recently found a very useful recipe that uses Chickpea (Chana) flour or Besan flour that is very simple to follow. Chickpea flour can be found wrapped in paper, rather than plastic, in many supermarkets, Asian food stores and health food stores.
I’ve used this recipe countless times and it has never failed! It’s super-easy, quick and can be customised for almost any type of cuisine. This recipe is from a YouTube video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Mv5jGrJw_A.
2 cups – Chickpea (Chana flour)
6 cups – Water (divided)
1/4 tsp – Turmeric
1 tsp – Salt
- Grease a rectangle pan, casserole dish or silicone mould.
- In a large pot, boil 4 cups of water or vegetable stock.
- Meanwhile, combine the chickpea flour, turmeric and 2 cups of water. Whisk until smooth.
- When the 4 cups of water/stock comes to a ROLLING boil, carefully stir in the chickpea mixture.
- Turn off the heat and continue stirring vigorously for five minutes. The mixture will turn from matte to glossy and will become super thick. If this does not happen within 2 minutes, turn on the heat to medium, but don’t let the pan get too hot as the bottom of the mixture will burn and stick to the pan.
- Pour the mixture quickly into your prepared pan and spread out evenly with a spoon.
- Let cool to room temperature before chilling in the fridge for an hour.
- After chilling, cut up the tofu as desired.
Optional additions (add in stage 3):
- Indian – add 1 tsp of curry powder or garam masala.
- Chinese – add 1 tsp of five spice powder.
- Italian – add 1 tsp mixed herbs.
- Moroccan – add 1 tsp Raz el Hanout.
Do not pour the chickpea mixture into the water/stock before it comes to a rolling boil. It MUST be hot enough in order for your tofu to set properly afterwards. If you have a gas stove, the residual heat may not be enough. In that case, turn the heat to very low instead of turning it off after adding the chickpea mixture.
Make sure you stir it for five whole minutes so the chickpea flour cooks through. If you don’t it gets a sprouty kind of taste. But if you plan to cook it after (like sauteing or deep frying) then don’t worry about that too much.
Store your tofu in the fridge. It will leech water as it sits and gets firmer over time. Simply drain out the water periodically.
One of my Instagram friends told me it does fine in the freezer, just thaw it in the fridge before using. I’ve never tried as I always eat it up quickly!
Eat cold, deep fry with your favourite batter, or fry in a pan with a little oil, sprinkling slices of tofu with flour before adding to the pan to give a crispy finish. Add to your favourite stir fries, curries or other dishes. Chickpea flour contains around 21g of protein per 100g of flour so the tofu can replace meat or pulses in your dishes and still give you a good hit of protein.