Warm Tofu in Garlic Sesame Sauce

By Monica Shaw •

A super tasty recipe for tofu that comes together in about 10 minutes.  Add some steamed rice, seasonal vegetables and you have a complete meal in no time flat.

This recipe could equally be called “The Easiest Way Ever To Make Tofu Taste Delicious”. It doesn’t involve any of the usual tricks people try to make tofu palatable: there’s no pressing or marinading or pan-frying or grilling. But the result is even better than you often get with some of these techniques.
The idea is simple: simmer tofu in water for a few minutes until its nice and hot. Remove the tofu and place it in a shallow bowl and top it with a savoury sauce.
That’s it.

The warm tofu basically becomes a sponge for the marinade, in this case, a potent marinade that’s well seasoned with garlic, spring onions, soy sauce, a good dose of chilli and finally, a smattering of sesame seeds for flavour and texture.
It all comes together in about 10 minutes. Add some steamed rice and vegetables (broccoli works really well here) and you have a complete meal in no time flat that’s tasty enough to wow your friends. In fact, this is one of my favourite meals to serve lunchtime guests when time is better suited to conversation and catching up rather than excessive amounts of extravagant cooking. 
It’s important to use good tofu here - I recommend ClearSpot or Taifun brand - and make sure it’s FIRM tofu (silken wouldn’t be horrible, but firm tofu is makes a more “meaty” base for the sauce).

Warm Tofu in Garlic Sesame Sauce

Serves 4

1 400g package of firm tofu
2 cloves garlic
1/4 cup chopped spring onions
2 teaspoons sesame seeds, and coarsely ground with a mortar and pestle
3 tablespoons soy sauce (or tamari for gluten free)
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1/2 tsp crushed red-pepper flakes (or more to taste)
1/2 teaspoon sugar


1. Put the tofu in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a simmer then keep covered on a low heat while you make the sauce.

2.  Mash the garlic in a mortar and pestle (or with the side of a knife) with a pinch of salt. Stir the mashed garlic together with remaining ingredients.

3.  Lift the tofu with a spatula or slotted spoon out of the water and transfer to a shallow bowl. Spoon the sauce all over the tofu and serve.

Inspired? For more vegan recipes visit Great British Chefs collection.



Monica Shaw

Monica Shaw is web consultant working with chefs, restaurants & food producers, to help them make use of the internet to improve their businesses. She's also a freelance writer, her credits include The Daily Telegraph, Chef Magazine and food mag. Monica enjoys experimenting with vegetables & creating delicious & healthy dishes, a topic covered on her blog SmarterFitter.com. She is working on The Healthy Vegan Breakfast Book, due to be published in March 2013

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