Crispy Japanese Miso Tofu

If you don’t like tofu, you might like this Crispy Japanese Miso Tofu. Even my husband, who isn’t a big fan of tofu, enjoyed it.

The procedure for making this recipe is similar to my Crispy Asian Peanut Tofu recipe, except I made this one with a traditional Japanese seasoning called miso. The making of the miso marinade and breadcrumbs are explained below.

Entirely plant-based and nutrient dense, tofu is a great addition to a healthy and balanced diet. It is rich in protein and contains all essential amino acids that your body needs.

In addition to providing healthy fats, carbs and fibre, tofu also contains a wide range of minerals and vitamins such as calcium, manganese, copper, selenium, Vitamin A, phosphorous, iron, magnesium and zinc. You can read more on the health benefits of tofu here.

For this Japanese recipe, make sure to choose a firm or extra firm tofu. Also, for best results, select organic or biological tofu.

どうぞお召し上がりください (Enjoy your meal!)

Crispy Japanese Miso Tofu

Serves 2-3

Tofu

  • Two firm organic tofu blocks, about 125 grams each (or one 250 grams block)
  • Vegetable or olive oil (or a mix of both) for frying
  • One stick-free or cast iron frying pan

Breadcrumbs

In a small bowl, combine and mix the following with a fork:

  • 1/2 cup regular breadcrumbs of choice * (see note)
  • 1/4 cup Panko crumbs (store-bought)
  • 1 tablespoon (tbsp) brown flax seeds
  • 1 tbsp pre-roasted sesame seeds, black or brown
  • Transfer to a glass jar and seal. Keeps for months.

* Note: Can use wholesome store-bought breadcrumbs. If using crackers to make your own, choose a simple basic, healthy kind. The crackers shouldn’t be too hard and should be easy to process. Break them into pieces, put them into your processor bowl and pulse to obtain crumbs.

Miso marinade

Makes enough for 500 grams of tofu.

In a small bowl, whisk the following:

  • 1 full tablespoon (tbsp) brown miso paste
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 3/4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 (teaspoon) tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp cornstarch

Store leftover miso marinade in a small sealed glass jar in refrigerator. Can be re-used as flavouring in stir-fries, fried rice and for making miso-roasted vegetables or potatoes.

Procedure

Rinse the tofu blocks under cold tap water and pat dry with paper towel. Wrap the blocks in dry paper towel and press for 10-15 minutes. I use two chopping boards and a big book placed on top.

If tofu is thick, slice the pressed blocks lengthwise in half so that they are about 1 or 2 cm thick. Tofu shouldn’t be too thick.

Brush the pressed tofu blocks with miso mixture on both sides and edges and let stand for at least 30 minutes or more (longer for more flavour) in a sealed container in fridge. I like to make them in advance and store them in fridge for a few hours.

Bread the tofu by adding about 2-3 tbsps of breadcrumbs on a flat plate and coat each tofu block with the crumbs on all sides by pressing down with your fingers. Repeat if using more tofu blocks. Press down with hands to lock the crumbs into the tofu.

Fry the tofu by heating up a non-stick frying pan with a small amount of oil. You don’t need much oil, about several tbsps or just enough to brush the bottom of your pan. Reduce the heat to medium-high. Fry the breaded tofu slices, about 5 minutes per side, or until crispy golden. Adjust the heat if need be. Try and not flip them too often. Use a metal spatula for flipping.

Remove and slice into strips or squares, cubes or triangles. Serve with rice or noodles and/or vegetables of choice. Can serve with a dip, spicy sauce of choice or soya sauce on side.

Enjoy!

Julie Zimmer

Julie has extensive experience in nursing practice and education in a wide range of fields from intensive/coronary care, to medical-surgical to community and public health. Julie has Bachelor Degrees in Psychology and Nursing, and a Master’s Degree in Community Health Nursing Education. She has taught in faculties of nursing and in various communities in Toronto, Canada and in Geneva, Switzerland, and is a consultant to the International Council of Nurses (ICN). Julie also has years of experience teaching English as a foreign language (EFL) in addition to coordinating an English department in a Swiss private school.

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