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July Meatless Monday Recipe: Three Cups Tofu

July 18, 2011

Three Cups Tofu comes from Taiwan, and gets it’s name from the equal parts of the oils & sauces the tofu is stir fried in.  (It can be made with chicken too.)  I first tried this dish while on jury duty in downtown Downtown LA.  One of the many restaurants I tried was Starry Kitchen (<- recommended!) , and this was on the ever-changing menu for the week.

I thought it was the most delicious way I’d ever had tofu (though it admittedly had little competition), so I looked up some recipes and ended up using this one.  I don’t have a wok.  I didn’t have the 2 of the 3 main sauce ingredients (though if you do any Asian cooking, YOU probably do).  I’d never worked with tofu before.  I’d never even used fresh ginger before!  Deep frying on the stove was a challenge.   Braising it was difficult, since my largest skillet doesn’t have a lid.  Evidence of my disaster-y kitchen:  (note – it is not unusual that i’m a disaster in the kitchen… just ask my husband)

BUT!  I made it!   Twice!  The first time it was SO GOOD, the second time, I thought it was good but maybe not worth the effort.  It was something different to cook (obviously on a Saturday – too much for me to on a weeknight!), but honestly, I’ll probably not make it again.  But if I see it on a menu, I’ll be sure to order it!  Look!  Despite disaster during the cooking phase, somehow the things I make always (ok, mostly always) turn out well.

Also, not that I was under any illusions that deep fried tofu was healthy in the first place, after making this dish and doing some research I learned that a lot of people (i.e. healthy living bloggers) have turned away from tofu and other processed soy products.  They now seem to fall into the “sometimes” food category.    I guess I didn’t follow the scene closely enough to that memo!  I only eat tofu sometimes anyway, so not much has changed based upon that knowledge…  except I’ve abandoned efforts to learn to cook it in more ways.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. July 18, 2011 5:27 pm

    Tofu is fine and awesome for you (I’m a dietitian). People freaked out about the phytoestrogens but there’s more estrogen in your meat and milk and health bloggers are always into yoghurt??? Dietary advice has actually changed very little since 1900 it’s just advertisers focus on different parts of the message to promote they’re product at the expense the whole picture.

    • July 18, 2011 8:20 pm

      I think the hype was that it was so heavily processed? I don’t know. Like you said, there is a bigger picture, and I’m not eliminating tofu, but I barely ate any to begin with. So introducing it sometimes is an improvement?

      Thanks for bringing some rational dietary advice!

  2. July 19, 2011 7:59 pm

    That looks so good! People in Asia eat tofu and tempe as their main source of protein and it hasn’t done any harm here. I usually don’t follow what health bloggers say, because typically it’s one popular blogger who will mention something in a post, and then everybody else follows. But as always, too much of one thing is never good.

    Also, thank you for your comment on my last post! I appreciate you taking the time to read that long post and leaving a very thoughtful comment. I just read an article about raising Global Kids in the most recent Newsweek that may be of interest to you. Here’s the link: http://www.newsweek.com/2011/07/17/american-kids-immersed-in-chinese-asian-education.html

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