Tofu: A flavor sponge that isn't limited to Asia

  • Andrew Marcus as he holds up blocks of firm tofu at the Hodo Soy Beanery in Oakland, Calif. In Hodo Soys 12,000-square-foot factory, organically grown soy beans are soaked, ground and boiled creating a rich soy milk to which the natural coagulant calcium sulfate is added.

    Andrew Marcus as he holds up blocks of firm tofu at the Hodo Soy Beanery in Oakland, Calif. In Hodo Soys 12,000-square-foot factory, organically grown soy beans are soaked, ground and boiled creating a rich soy milk to which the natural coagulant calcium sulfate is added. Associated Press

  • Extra-firm tofu gets the sweet and spicy flavors of Jamaican jerk chicken in this preparation.

    Extra-firm tofu gets the sweet and spicy flavors of Jamaican jerk chicken in this preparation. Associated Press

 
Associated Press
Updated 2/1/2011 2:04 PM

Tofu is a great flavor sponge. And because it readily soaks up seasonings, it's a wonderful choice for marinating.

We used the flavors of Jamaican jerk chicken -- slightly sweet, slightly spicy -- to enhance an easy baked tofu. Served with pineapple salsa, this dish can be served as an appetizer or as a main dish. Try it with rice or in a sandwich.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Be sure to buy extra-firm water-packed tofu for this recipe. The vacuum-packed varieties are too tender. If you have extra time, the best way to squeeze the water from tofu is to place it between multiple sheets of paper towels in a shallow bowl. Place a small plate over it and weigh it down slightly. Refrigerate it for several hours, draining periodically.