Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Easiest Way To Use Tofu Yet! Tofu Pokē

I love tofu. (Obviously.)

And I am always looking for new, interesting, tasty ways to incorporate it into my meals.

Tofu Pokē
I thought I'd pretty much heard of every way imaginable when one of my co-workers (who is very much NOT vegetarian) brought me a small Tupperware container of what turned out to be the BEST, most delicious tofu I'd ever had.

 "We eat this all the time at home! ("Home" for her is Hawaii) Sometimes with raw fish, too!"
She was amused with my "raw fish" grimace, and (once she assured me it was vegan), delighted that I liked the tofu.

I may have eaten all of it.
The rest of our co-workers politely turned their noses up at the mention of tofu.


 Yes, for the uninformed, I had just been introduced to an Hawaiian dish called "Tofu Poke".

Of course I asked for the recipe, and Lori, my co-worker, laughed and said "Go to the store and buy Pokē Tofu Mix". Which I did, because it was strangely, addictively delicious and refreshing. (I know, you're skeptical!)

It's super simple; you take fresh, firm tofu, cut it into tiny cubes, and sprinkle with the "Poke" ingredients:  pink Hawaiian sea salt, red chile flakes and purpleish-pink ogo seaweed bits.
Then add your own toasted sesame oil and green onion.
That's it. Simple and soooo good!

(I've since learned you can add black sesame seeds, minced red onion or finely grated ginger, but I usually make mine pretty simple.)

 I know it sounds.... um.... interesting, but try it if you ever get a chance!!! The combination works, and works well. Think of it as a mild, colorful tuna salad.
The seaweed adds a very slightly salty, ocean taste; the sesame oil and chili flakes balance everything out.

Pokē is the Hawaiian verb for "slice" or "cut" and usually refers to a popular raw fish dish made with ahi tuna and/or octopus. Making Poke Tofu alongside, mixed with, or in place of the fish is not uncommon, however.
"Noh" Poke Mix
I've only made it with the little "Poke Mix" seasoning kit; a tiny cellophane package with a wad of dried seaweed. sea salt and chile flakes, available at most specialty and Asian markets. (See photo).

If you see these packets, grab one, and some firm, very fresh tofu and try "Poke Tofu" - easiest thing to do with tofu EVER.


Anonymous said...

what an interesting recipe! sounds delicious!