RE: Need the 411 on tofu
Posted Wednesday, September 22, 2010 at 9:27 AM
Silken tofu is the tofu that comes in a shelf stable container (no refrigeration required). It can be soft, firm, or extra firm. But it is definitely creamier and much better for baking or mixing into recipes such as smoothies, mousses, and desserts.
Tofu that is refrigerated can also be soft, firm, and extra firm. However, its texture is a little tougher. This is the kind that can be frozen and thawed in order to squeeze out even more water before you cook with it. This process makes it less "slimy" and chewier like meat. It's also so dry from squeezing out the water that it tends to soak up and hold sauces better.
Without freezing tofu, you can still press out some of the water. You just have to be more careful as the block may fall apart in your hands. Some people will gingerly place the tofu between two plates with a little weight on top (cookbooks or whatever is handy). You leave it like that for several minutes and then pour off the excreted water.
Personally, I'm a big fan of the freezing, thawing, and squeezing process. It makes tofu really delicious. You just have to plan ahead.
Susan Levin, MS, RD
PCRM Director of Nutrition Education