TofuXpress and Tomato Not-zarella Salad

The other day I got a present in the mail that I am SO excited about. The nice people at TofuXpress  sent me their tofu press to review. I love any new kitchen gadgets and within hours of the UPS man dropping this off at my door, I got to work on a tofu dish for dinner. After a few tofu-eating years, I finally learned how to prepare tofu well. For a while, I was squeezing my big block of tofu between two plates in the sink, and would clunk a heavy pot on top to weight it down while some moisture drained into the sink. This tofu tower in the sink method was always a tedious process and messy, too. Then I discovered the freeze method for tofu where you drain it, slice it, freeze it, defrost it the next day, and squeeze it out again to get a great textured tofu that soaks up sauce so well. As good as this method is, it takes planning way ahead and while I’ve been known to have a running dinner list in my head for the week, sometimes I like my tofu dishes to be impromptu.

With TofuXpress, all I needed was an hour to squeeze out as much wetness as possible and then it was good to go. The gadget couldn’t be any easier to use. Plop in your block of tofu and set it up to squeeze. TofuXpress recommends you let it squeeze out the water for an hour or more, so I got mine set up, let it hang out in the fridge for an hour, and when I came back to it there was six ounces of water drained out!

I love it! I felt like I got so much more of the water out this way than in my other cumbersome methods. I took a nibble of the tofu right then and there and loved the texture. It didn’t have that slippery, wet, slimy texture that tofu has right out of the container. I didn’t even put my TofuXpress away in a cabinet. I left it right out after I used it (and washed it) for easy access every time we want tofu with dinner.

For dinner I wanted to make a take on a tomato mozzarella salad, sans mozzarella. I figured tofu looks just like mozzarella, so why not? I picked some fresh basil leaves and cut them into thin ribbons, and used a pint of cherry tomatoes, rinsed and sliced in half.

For the dressing I used a drizzle of this garlic olive oil (on the right) that we got in Tuscany.

And for the tofu, after squeezing it out with my TofuXpress, I cut the block into small cubes, then tossed them with a tablespoon of cornstarch and a few shakes of salt. I read somewhere (probably EatingWell) that by using cornstarch on your tofu before pan-frying it, you can actually fry it with less oil and still get a nice golden, crisp finish on your tofu. I pan fried the tofu in some canola oil until it started to get slightly brown and crispy, while still soft like mozzarella. Then I seasoned with more salt and pepper, and the garlic olive oil. Final product mixed all together:

We paired the salad with some crusty bread dipped in olive oil (I love the bread from Trader Joe’s that is half baked, and you finish off the baking at home. Makes me feel all domestic.)…

And some Chianti Classico with the pink label and black rooster. Thanks TofuXpress for making this tofu dish delish!

Disclaimer: I was not paid by TofuXpress to review this product.

7 Comments

  1. Posted July 21, 2010 at 10:42 am | Permalink

    Not a huge tofu gal myself but this gadget sounds fantastic. I too have tried the weighing tofu down with anything and everything and knew there had to be a better way. I like the caprese-eque salad idea as well.

  2. Posted July 21, 2010 at 11:51 am | Permalink

    I NEED one of those! Maybe TofuXpress wants to send me one too to review??? 🙂

  3. Posted July 25, 2010 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    How is it possible that I’ve never pressed tofu when I’ve made it? (Granted, I’ve also only marinated and baked it). Am I missing something really important here? I feel dumb. 🙂

  4. Janel
    Posted July 25, 2010 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    Hi Emily! I find tofu is too wet and slippery if you don’t press it. When tofu is pressed, it soaks up sauces and marinades really well and bakes with a nice chewy texture.

  5. Posted July 26, 2010 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

    Janel, I tried this dinner tonight. I loved it, delicious! Great idea for the lactose intolerant like myself who don’t do so well with mozzarella.

  6. Posted November 17, 2011 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    Janel – you cracked me up with your description of how you used to squash your tofu – i do the same! this gadget sounds great. Recipe looks delicious 🙂

  7. Janel
    Posted November 17, 2011 at 11:28 am | Permalink

    Glad you can relate to my former tofu press methods! The TofuXpress really helps! And I can let it squeeze in the fridge which makes it even easier (and less sink clutter). Have you done the freezing tofu method before? It tastes so much better that way!

7 Trackbacks

  1. By Relishments » Highlights: Kitchen Accessories on July 25, 2010 at 6:04 pm

    […] The TofuXpress review on Eat Well with Janel made me wonder if I’ve been doing tofu “wrong”, since I’ve never pressed mine at all.  May need to look into that.  Anyway, apparently the press is pretty awesome, if you press your tofu. […]

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