Crispy Tofu recipe

Some history

Tofu, also referred to as bean curd, boasts an illustrious history that can be traced back more than two millennia to the heart of China. While the precise genesis of this versatile soybean product remains shrouded in mystery due to the passage of time, it is encircled by a rich tapestry of theories and legends.

One attributes the inception of tofu to Prince Liu An, a figure hailing from the Han Dynasty, which thrived between 179 and 122 BC. According to this captivating tale, Prince Liu An embarked on a quest for the elixir of immortality, utilizing soybeans as his medium of experimentation. During these alchemical pursuits, he inadvertently stumbled upon tofu.

Tofu’s connection to Buddhism in China is another riveting facet of its history. It is postulated that Buddhist monks, renowned for their culinary ingenuity and dietary restrictions, played an integral role in the evolution and widespread acceptance of tofu. The flexible nature of tofu, its innate ability to assume diverse flavours and its capacity to mimic meat textures made it an ideal surrogate for animal-based protein in vegetarian and vegan diets. In Buddhist monasteries, tofu emerged as a dietary cornerstone, earning its reputation as a vital source of sustenance for those wanting to follow a plant-based path which is both healthy, nutritious and very flavourful .

Another theory proposes a more organic genesis for tofu. This theory suggests that tofu’s creation unfolded naturally through the fermentation of soybean paste. The process, akin to the transformation of milk into cheese, separated the soybean paste into curds and whey. Over time, these curds evolved into the recognizable tofu that graces tables worldwide today.

Crispy Tofu Recipe


  • 1 block (about 14 oz) extra-firm tofu
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika (or regular paprika)
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (adjust to your spice preference)
  • 3 red  Chillies – chopped
  • Salt and black pepper to taste.
  • 2-3 tablespoons vegetable oil


  1. Start by pressing the tofu to remove excess moisture. Place the tofu block between two clean kitchen towels or paper towels. Place a heavy object, like a cast-iron skillet or a couple of canned goods, on top of the tofu. Press for at least 30 minutes to an hour. This step is essential to achieve crispy tofu.
  2. Slice and Marinate the Tofu: After pressing, cut the tofu into bite-sized cubes or rectangles.
  3. In a shallow bowl, whisk together soy sauce, rice vinegar, cornstarch, garlic powder, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, salt, and black pepper.
  4. Add the tofu pieces to the marinade, gently toss to coat them evenly, and let them marinate for 15-30 minutes. This allows the tofu to absorb the flavours.
  5. Heat the Oil: In a large non-stick skillet or frying pan, heat 2-3 tablespoons of vegetable oil over medium-high heat. You want enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan generously.
  6. Fry the Tofu: Once the oil is hot (but not smoking), carefully add the marinated tofu pieces to the pan, ensuring they are in a single layer and not overcrowded.
  7. Fry the tofu for about 3-4 minutes on each side, or until they are golden brown and crispy. Use a spatula to flip them.
  8. If necessary, you can fry the tofu in batches to ensure they cook evenly.
  9. Drain and Serve:Once the tofu is crispy and golden on all sides, remove it from the pan and place it on a plate lined with paper towels to drain any excess oil.
  10. Serve: Garnish with the red Chillies and  serve the crispy tofu hot with your favourite dipping sauce (like Weymouth 51 Hong Kong Dipping sauce )  or incorporate it into salads, stir-fries, rice bowls, or any other dishes you desire.  For even more exceptional flavour serve it with one of one of our  handmade artisan Chilli sauces like Weymouth 51 Lemon Drizzle or Adore Chillies Mango and Scotch Bonnet Chilli  sauce.

Enjoy your homemade crispy tofu! This versatile and delicious dish adds a satisfying crunch to any meal and pairs wonderfully with a variety of sauces and sides.

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