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Deep fried tofu, or abura-age, is used in soups, one pot cookery, noodle dishes, and in many other ways. It can also be delicious all by itself as a topping on a bowl of rice (domburi). Deep fried tofu can be purchased at most Asian food stores, but it is easily made at home, and all that you'll need is a wok for the deep frying and a colander for rinsing and draining. Deep fried until crisp and golden brown on the outside, abura-aga is amazingly white and soft on the inside! Preparation time includes pressing time.
- 1 (250 g) packageof regular firm tofu
- 600 ml vegetable oil
- Remove the excess moisture from the block of tofu by wrapping it in a clean towel and placing it between 2 cutting boards, let stand for an hour or two.
- Now cut the tofu block into triangle shapes, about two inches long.
- Pour the oil into the wok and heat, when you dip a chopstick into the heated oil and bubbles rise from it the oil is ready for use.
- If the oil smokes it is too hot.
- Using the wok's spatula, slide the tofu triangles one at a time into the hot oil.
- Fry on both sides until golden brown.
- Scoop the triangles out of the wok and allow them to drain on the wok's draining grill (or place on paper towels).
- Once the triangles are drained and cool, it's a good idea to give them a second deep frying.
- This deepens their golden color and makes them nice and crisp.
- Place once again on the grill to drain and cool.
- The final step requires that you place the fried tofu triangles in a colander and run very hot water over them. I put the colander in the sink and allow the hot water from the faucet to run over the tofu, while I simultaneously pour boiling water from a pot over the triangles. This hot water bath completely leeches all remnants of oil from the tofu, resulting in tofu that you would never imagine as having been deep fried.
- Pat dry the tofu and serve with rice or noodles and a little shoyu, or use the fried tofu in another recipe.