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Thread: Tofu

  1. #1
    Waking Up lotus_blue's Avatar
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    Question Tofu

    I have a question that, I must admit, being vegan, I'm a little embarassed to ask.....

    Exactly what is the difference between silken and regular tofu? Around here, all I can find is silken, but I've noticed that a lot of recipes call for regular and specifically say "not silken".

    Thanks!
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  2. #2
    I'm a lurker. I lurk out.
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    Firm tofu is dense and solid and holds up well in stir fry dishes, soups, or on the grill... anywhere that you want the tofu to maintain its shape. Firm tofu also is higher in protein, fat and calcium than other forms of tofu.

    Soft tofu is a good choice for recipes that call for blended tofu, or in Oriental soups.

    Silken tofu is made by a slightly different process that results in a creamy, custard-like product. Silken tofu works well in pureed or blended dishes. In Japan, silken tofu is enjoyed "as is," with a touch of soy sauce and topped with chopped scallions.

    Sorry for the lazy reply. This was copied directly from here.

  3. #3
    anti-social iamtheqbu's Avatar
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    Hmm. White Wave (makers of Silk soy milk) makes regular tofu. If your store carries Silk, they should carry regular tofu also. If not, they can probably special order it for you if you ask really nice.

    That's the only brand of regular tofu in my area though. Everything else is silken, which is silly because most people don't eat silken tofu as much as they cook with it. This can be a bad situation for a first time tofu eater who may not know the difference. Silken tofu is just yucky by itself in my opinion! It does make good smoothies, and good 'cheese' cake though.
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  4. #4
    Plant-Based Person shade's Avatar
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    I have only ever found silken tofu (although I've never tried it) in one store before. Regular tofu is EVERYWHERE around here though. I just can't picture a supermarket without the racks of all the different brands and kinds of tofu lined up.

    All this talk about tofu is making me crave it.

  5. #5
    babymooning atouria's Avatar
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    I have a quick tofu oriented question:

    If a recipe calls for 1 8oz pkg of Italian -flavored baked tofu, and I make my own marinated italian tofu, does that mean I need to bake it before I continue with the recipe?

    I'm making the tofu-carrot cacciatore in the may/june issue of veg. times. The recipe further calls for it to be cut into cubes and simmered an hour with other veggies.

  6. #6
    babymooning atouria's Avatar
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    eep, no one else has seen that packaged either? I'm going to bake it for safe measure then. The oven is warming now.

  7. #7
    half a block from Normal Emiloid's Avatar
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    I think you should bake it if you want to ensure the proper texture. If not, or if you're pressed for time (or want to conserve energy), just toss it in unbaked. If you want to experiment, you could do half-and-half and see whether the two kinds of tofu are noticeably different.
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  8. #8
    babymooning atouria's Avatar
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    Thanks

  9. #9
    I feel your pain! Around here, I can only find silken tofu, but I find that it can be pretty versatile as well. If you buy the extra firm silken tofu, it can be great in a stirfry and hold its shape fairly well. The other types of silken tofu are good in soups and desserts, so either way, I've found silken works. Though I looooove cooking with really firm tofu, and they even have a "hard" tofu that I assume is ideal for baking. Anyway, there are ways to order it online as well, I just can't find a link (sorry!). Anyway, good luck!

    P.S. I've also found that if you press the water out of it, wrap in in paper towels and put a plate or something on top of it for about 30 minutes to get the water out it stays firmer.
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  10. #10
    So I read this thread and thought I understood it, until I found something that is made by Nasoya and packed in water in containers identical to their firm, etc. tofus, but claims to be silken on the package. It's definitely very squishy.

    So...what is this stuff and what should I do with it? Besides continuing to change the water every day forever, I mean. Can I use it in recipes that call for soft silken tofu, or what?

  11. #11
    we are borg grog's Avatar
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    if its silken its silken? I'm confused as to the question. Silken tofu is good for smoothies and blended things. Not so much for frying or baking.
    Many that live deserve death. And some that die deserve life. Can you give it to them? - Gandalf the Grey

  12. #12
    I guess the question is, I thought silken meant it came in the aseptic box, not packed in water? Did I get that part wrong?

    And I bought this stuff in the first place because a cookie recipe called for it (and they came out great!), yet you say it's not good for baking, so now I'm twice as confused.

  13. #13
    we are borg grog's Avatar
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    huh, beats me then

    ETA: when I say not good for baking, I mean not as chunks. if you blended into a cookie as an egg replacer, then that is probably a good use for silken tofu. perhaps it can come in different containers.
    Many that live deserve death. And some that die deserve life. Can you give it to them? - Gandalf the Grey

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by grog
    ETA: when I say not good for baking, I mean not as chunks. if you blended into a cookie as an egg replacer, then that is probably a good use for silken tofu. perhaps it can come in different containers.
    Oh, I get you now. Yeah, that's exactly what I did. Too bad I only needed 1/4 cup for that; now I've got the rest of the package to do something with. I don't really need that many more cookies.

    (Um, OK, I guess I didn't really need the first batch either.)

  15. #15
    Silken tofu can definitely be packed in water. The packaging doesn't affect or have anything to do with the firmness.

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