Baked Crispy Tofu with Coconut Rice

Cook Date: June 6, 2020

It’s all about the sauce.

So, yeah, in case you are wondering… At this point I have exactly 1 other tofu recipe on my blog. We’ve eaten a lot of meat during the past couple of months so we thought it would be nice to try something different – and different from beans. (Although technically tofu is from beans I think). My first inclination was to go back to that original recipe, but as Carla and I looked through some of the recipes I have book marked this one called out to us.

This recipe is from Mike and Steph at I Am A Food Blog. It is very easy requiring only 6 ingredients – 8 if you add the garnish, which we did not.

Ingredients for Baked Crispy Tofu – minus the pepper grinder.

As you can see in the picture, I used extra firm tofu because I didn’t want to end up with tofu crumbles. I set the block of tofu between paper towels and used a weight to press it.

Pressing the water out of tofu

Measure out the ingredients. I didn’t measure out the honey – I just glopped a couple of tablespoons in – as you’ll see.

Sauce ingredients for crispy baked tofu.

There are two stages to the recipe. First cube the tofu and toss it with some cornstarch and spread it out on a parchment paper lined sheet pan. Then pop it into a 400° oven for 30-45 minutes.

Tofu cubes ready for the oven

Just before I started cubing the tofu, I started the coconut rice in the rice cooker. There are many, many similar coconut rice recipes out there. I chose this recipe from Kristin at Yellow Bliss Road. I picked it because it was very clear and Kristin got back to me when I asked a question on her website. That is great follow through for a recipe that was posted over a year and a half ago.

Coconut Rice Ingredients

Thoroughly rinse the rice; put it in the rice cooker – the recipe I linked has a stove top method as well – and add coconut milk, water, salt, sugar, and coconut flakes. My can of coconut milk had separated and it wasn’t coming back together by shaking the can; so I took off the lid, poured it into a mixing bowl and whisked until the water and cream were combined. The mixture will be very soupy, but no worries it will come out delicious. I thought it would take forever to cook but it was done in less than an hour.

When the tofu is almost done – golden brown – get the sauce in order. Tofu doesn’t have much taste to it to begin with and tossing it with cornstarch – while helping it to crisp – won’t add any flavor. The flavor comes from the sauce – a very simple sauce. Put a couple of tablespoons of honey, a tablespoon of soy sauce, and a few minced garlic clove into a small pan. Sauté until it’s bubbly and has thickened a bit.

Move the tofu bits into a mixing bowl and add the sauce. The tofu was a bit darker than I captured in this picture. Add the warm sauce on top and toss it all together.

Baked tofu ready for the sauce.

We bought a jar of our favorite brand of kimchi for a side dish. I don’t see myself making my own.

Kimchi as a side dish.

Dinner is served: crispy tofu with garlicky sauce, coconut rice, and kimchi.

Dinner is served

Rating: ★★★★ Very good and now in our regular rotation.

Carla and I cleaned our plates and went back for seconds.

A couple of notes. If you make this dish, I recommend eating it hot. The seconds were good but not as amazing as the first plateful. Cook the sauce during the last few minutes of the tofu baking. As soon as the tofu is done toss it in the bowl, add the sauce, stir – gently – and serve.

Second, We ate forkfuls with a combination of tofu and rice. When I make it again I’ll serve it in a bowl, rice on bottom, tofu on top and kimchi as a side.

Go for it; it’s simple, very tasty, and crispy.

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