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Some things I just learned and/or forgot to say about tofu:

1. Tofu is very cooling to the body. This is one reason that you don't want to eat it raw. Tofu can be applied to the head through cheesecloth in order to make a plaster that will draw out the heat of a headache. If you want to make a tofu salad dressing you can blanch, steam, or gently boil the tofu before doing so in order to increase digestibility and reduce the cooling properties that will chill your digestive tract.
2. My macro cookbook by Aveline Kushi says that a "small amount" of tofu can be eaten every day in addition to or in replacement of beans. A “small amount” means very small I think.
3. Tofu is traditionally solidified with nigari. (Like cheese is curdled with rennet.) Nigari is the residue after sea salt is extracted from sea water. It is high in magnesium and iron in particular. Another natural solidifying agent is calcium sulfate, which comes from gypsum found in the mountains. You can also use lemon juice to solidify tofu if you make your own at home. Commercially sold tofu is now solidified with vinegar, aluminum (linked to Alzheimer’s), refined calcium sulfate, or other chemicals.
4. Tofu is high in protein and oil so its natural complement is salt (miso or tamari). Adding tofu to desserts (like pies or cakes) and using it with sweeteners is an American custom. If you really want to enjoy sweet tofu, it is better to add a small amount of mirin rather than rice syrup, maple syrup, etc.
5. Frozen tofu (which I have just discovered!) keeps longer and reportedly has a smoother and finer texture. (I find it pleasantly gritty.) “According to legend, frozen tofu was discovered when a Buddhist monk dropped a bucket of tofu in the snow after being startled by a fox. The next day he retrieved the frozen tofu and brought it back to the temple, where its unique qualities were enjoyed by all.” Before freezing fresh tofu, press all the water out first. Frozen tofu keeps for three months. To thaw, place the tofu in boiling water for ten minutes then gently press out the excess water. Or, place frozen tofu in cold water for ten minutes then rinse and squeeze.


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