How to press tofu three different ways
Tofu has long made its way from traditional Asian cooking, to an entire art form in contemporary fusion cuisine. The veggie and vegan go-to is rich in plant protein, low in calories, and very versatile. If prepared the right way, that is.
Pressing tofu is the secret to a tofu we’re tous fous about.
Reserve silken tofu for smoothies and scrambles. Let’s talk firm and extra firm.
A block of tofu comes packaged in water. Like a saturated sponge, it can’t absorb any more liquid. Pressing tofu is a must to make space for other flavours, and to improve texture. Choose your ritual wisely.
The fastest and most efficient way to press tofu is with the TofuBud tofu press. However, if you still haven’t got one, or have some free hours to a day to kill, feel free to try one of the two popular methods described below. Whatever you do, enjoy it!
Quick and easy with TofuBud
There's a lot of choice in the world of tofu presses. We love TofuBud for how user friendly it is. Besides, if you want pressed tofu drained to the last drop, TofuBud can be trusted to get the job done.
Assemble the tofu press and place the tofu block inside, between the two perforated plates. Close the lid, and press down the knob until hearing a click once for level 1 pressure, or twice for level 2. The first removes some water from firm tofu, and is even suitable for lightly straining silken tofu. Level 2 is for draining firm and extra firm tofu dry. Wait 15-20 min and pour off the water collected in the tofu strainer. Voila, that’s it!
Perks: restaurant quality in minutes, drip-free, easy to clean, assemble, and use. Very easy to love!
Setbacks: none! Unless you think it’s hard to disassemble 6 basic parts and toss them in the dishwasher, you lazy amateur!
The other two methods
This involves no pressing at all. Cut the block of tofu into even cubes, distribute evenly on a plate or cutting board, making sure the pieces don’t touch, and place in the freezer for at least an hour. Defrost and cook!
Perks: convenient for preparing large quantities of tofu in advance: frozen tofu keeps for several months.
Setbacks: it takes at least 1.5 h; freezing makes tofu slightly yellow; defrosted tofu is chewier in texture.
DIY tofu press
Put your block of tofu between two flat plates or boards. Place a thick tea towel underneath the bottom one. Alternatively, opt for a solid amount of paper towels. Weigh down the top plate with several heavy books, a cooking pot filled with water, or whatever tickles your fancy. Just make sure the weight is distributed evenly on the whole block. Wait at least 2-3 h, but preferably overnight.
Perks: it can challenge your creativity and turn into some good laughs with friends.
Setbacks: Time. To get the same quality as with a tofu press, overnight pressing is needed. Good luck fitting a book tower in the fridge! It can also get messy.
Whatever your tofu pressing ritual of choice, the key is to have fun and make good memories.