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ropmop

A tofu conundrum

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ropmop

Hi guys, so I live in Japan (hopefully soon to move to China!) and last night I experienced something interesting! So a few days ago I bought some (i believe unsweetened) Soymilk Yoghurt, and accidentally left it, unopened, overnight out of the fridge. The next morning I refrigerated it, thinking it had probably spoiled overnight - but I didn't open it. 

 

A few days later and I decided to brave it, and what I saw looked like.. a block of tofu! It seemed to have formed into a solid block quite akin to silken tofu. It didn't smell bad, so I decided to try a spoon, and it was delicious - exactly like fresh tofu! I actually ate a fair bit as you can see haha. 

 

Anyhow, thought this was interesting! Anyone know exactly what went on here?

 

I think Mapo Tofu is on the menu tonight...

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abcdefg

Welcome to the forum!

 

What you are describing has never happened to me. Ordinary cow's milk yogurt in China is often stored on the counter, not refrigerated, for days at a time without becoming solid. I don't have any experience with soy milk yogurt. 

 

I usually make my own yogurt and refrigerate it for a week or so while using it up. Once or twice I've gone out of town and forgotten part of a batch. When it spoils it develops red and green mold on the surface instead of becoming solid. (Again, this is cow's milk yogurt, not soy milk yogurt.) 

 

Tofu is typically pressed to get rid of excess moisture. How hard and how long it is pressed is a large factor in determining final texture. 

 

 

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ropmop

Thanks friend! What I find odd is that soy milk, when it spoils, does so quite quickly and very distinctively. It's the definition of sour! Whereas the yoghurt did not, but there has definitely been some kind of reaction.. 

 

Yes, this tofu is quite soft, but actually I ate most of it raw for dinner the other night, simply standing it for 20 minutes a lot of moisture ran out and it firmed up slightly. Pressed by its own weight!

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abcdefg

Agree, that is puzzling.

 

You mentioned Mapo Tofu 麻婆豆腐 in your first post, above. Hope you will buy some more tofu and make it anyhow. And now is a good time for dishes that take a little more time to prepare. It's one of my all-time favorite Sichuan dishes! 

 

https://www.chinese-forums.com/forums/topic/55081-sichuan-fire-mapo-tofu-麻婆豆腐/?tab=comments#comment-424793 

 

Is it easy to get the spices for something like this in Japan? 

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In Japan, 麻婆豆腐 is the classic Chinese dish and very popular. Packets of seasoning available everywhere.

 

I wouldn't be surprised if there are Mapo Doufu Instant Noodles on the market. Maybe even Mapo Doufu Ice Cream.

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ropmop

Oh yes, I have made it many times. Okinawa island, where I live, has a local tofu, 島豆腐,  which is available (but sells out fast!) in every supermarket, the farmers drop it off in the morning, still warm, and it's gone by the PM. It's absolutely delicious, and perfect for Mapo Tofu.

 

The spices are very easy to get, although the 豆瓣酱 is not very good quality, and I've not seen fresh Sichuan Peppercorns - only preground. Luckily I have some stock of my own I brought back from my last time in Sichuan!

 

Yes, there is Mapo Doufu pre prepared everywhere too, in convience stores etc - tends to not be very authentic though, sometimes doesn't have any mala flavour at all. Japanese generally don't like spicy!

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abcdefg
10 hours ago, ropmop said:

Yes, there is Mapo Doufu pre prepared everywhere too, in convience stores etc - tends to not be very authentic though, sometimes doesn't have any mala flavour at all. Japanese generally don't like spicy!

 

That sounds like a good reason to make your own at home: Can adjust the seasoning to your personal taste. Kunming is close enough to Sichuan that we get lots of Sichuan-trained cooks who move here to open restaurants and continue to make things the same way they did at home. Mapo Tofu 麻婆豆腐 tends to be inexpensive as well as delicious. It is under 20 Yuan at the Sichuan restaurant I most frequently visit, one in a shopping mall that has a movie theater on the same floor. 

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