Tofu Dips and Sauces

Two varieties of super-soft silken tofu

Artichoke dip: Instead of dipping my artichoke petals in melted butter or mayonnaise, I prepare a creamy, high protein, isoflavone rich dip made from organic silken tofu, ume (plum) vinegar, organic extra virgin olive oil, and dill weed.

Silken tofu is the thinnest, smoothest, most watery type of tofu, and is sometimes sold in boxes shelved among the dry oriental foods rather than in the refrigerated case with the other types of tofu. Ume vinegar, also found in the oriental foods section, lends both a salty and a sour taste, and makes tofu taste like fermented dairy. If you can’t get ume vinegar, you can use some of the flesh of a seeded pickled ume plum instead (season to taste). Olive oil gives a mayonnaise-like oiliness and Mediterranean taste to the mixture.

Pour off the water in which the silken tofu is floating, and then pour the block of tofu into a food processor, along with one tablespoon of organic extra virgin olive oil, two teaspoons of ume vinegar and a teaspoon of dill weed. Blend until smooth and pour into a dish. Dunk your steamed artichoke petals.

Faux fruit yogurt: vegan breakfast treat, tastes like a fruit yogurt: Place one box of drained silken tofu in the food processor with some slightly thawed frozen berries and blend until smooth. Pour into a dish, and, optionally, add more thawed or fresh fruit on top.

Kim Cheese: Spicy, low fat, high fiber, high protein topping for baked potatoes, steamed cauliflower or whole grain crackers: Pour into a food processor one carton of (drained) organic tofu (heavier than silken but not “hard”) and one jar of kim chee – preferably organic, but certainly no MSG and no preservatives. If you can’t find kim chee without MSG where you live, here’s a recipe.) Blend until smooth. Taste and correct the seasoning, using ume vinegar if it needs more salt and acidity, and olive oil if it needs a richer flavor.

Cut open the top of the baked potato lengthwise and crosswise , squish it together a little, and then add a half cup of the sauce.

Vegan cottage cheese is easy to make by mashing organic extra firm tofu (White Wave, Wildwood, etc.) with a fork, adding a dollop of Follow Your Heart Grape Seed Oil Vegenaise, and salting to taste with ume plum vinegar.