I was going to post something about tonight's vote in favor of gay marriage
in Canada's house of Commons. Or something about the Bush dealie tonight, and ABC reporting that it was a White House advance team member who started the one applause during the speech. But, actually, I just wanted to point those two things out. So, here's the recipe.
The Tofu Recipe
aka "Lois's Tofu Recipe" aka "Teriyaki Tofu"
2 lbs firm or extra-firm tofu
2 T fresh ginger, minced
1/4 C sugar (brown or white!)
1/4 C sherry cooking wine
1/4 C mirin (or white wine)
2 T soy sauce
2 T sesame oil
Press tofu, at least with your hands, if not between plates for a few minutes, to remove water. Lay tofu down, and with knife perpendicular to length of tofu, cut each 1 lb block into about seven slabs. Fry tofu in olive oil until both sides are lightly browned (you'll need two pans; or, you can do it in two rounds). Remove tofu and dry/cool on paper towels.
Meanwhile, combine all other ingredients to prepare a marinade. When completed, microwave for approximately 30 seconds to make it luke-warm; stir to make sure sugar is mostly dissolved.
Cut each tofu slab into six pieces (use a sharp knife, and do it carefully; you don't want the pieces to fall apart). Drop them into a 1 gallon ziploc bag, and dump in the marinade (you can use a bowl, too, but that's less satisfying, somehow). Toss bag around a bit, then refrigerate. Marinate for an hour or so, if time permits, periodically flipping bag.
Then dump entire bag out into large frying pan; cook on medium-high heat. Flip and stir pieces periodically as liquid cooks down for 5 or 10 minutes. As liquid all but dissapears, flip frequently, so that no piece burns, but keep it on the heat until sugar begins to caramalize on tofu pieces, which turn a darker brown. This is the crucial step; don't stop cooking before you get some caramelization and some pieces are verging on burning.
Serve on top of a bed of (lightly salted) brown rice, with fried broccoli and broiled zucchini strips, quartered mushrooms, and red or white onions all in the mix.
-the recipe I originally had used white sugar. But teriyaki-type sauces traditionally use brown sugar.
-I wouldn't bother making this recipe with just 1 lb of tofu; it's too much time for too little product. Once I did 3 lbs. Remember, 1/4 cup is equal to 4 tablespoons.
-you can throw in a bit of rice vinegar, or other vinegar, if you like. But don't do more than 1 teaspoon.
-use a large non-stick pan. Really. Cast-iron won't work for this, and aluminum would probably be quite tricky as well.