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Myanmar – Life At Inle Lake – Tofu Processing – 1

Myanmar - Life At Inle Lake - Tofu Processing - 1

Tofu, also known as bean curd, is a food made by coagulating soy milk and then pressing the resulting curds into soft white blocks. It is a component in East Asian and Southeast Asian cuisines. There are many different varieties of tofu, including fresh tofu and tofu that has been processed in some way. Tofu is bought or made to be soft, firm, or extra firm. Tofu has a subtle flavor and can be used in savory and sweet dishes. It is often seasoned or marinated to suit the dish.

Tofu originated in Han dynasty China some 2,000 years ago.[5] Chinese legend ascribes its invention to prince Liu An (179–122 BC). Tofu and its production technique were introduced into Korea and then Japan during the Nara period (710–794). Some scholars believe tofu arrived in Vietnam during the 10th and 11th century. It spread into other parts of Southeast Asia as well. This spread probably coincided with the spread of Buddhism because it is an important source of protein in the vegetarian diet of East Asian Buddhism. Li Shizhen in the Ming Dynasty described a method of making tofu in the Compendium of Materia Medica.

Tofu has a low calorie count and relatively large amounts of protein. It is high in iron, and depending on the coagulants used in manufacturing (e.g. calcium chloride, calcium sulfate, magnesium sulfate), it can have higher calcium or magnesium content.

The term tofu by extension can be used in similarly textured curdled dishes that do not use soy products at all, such as "almond tofu" (almond jelly), tamago-dōfu (ja) (egg), goma-dōfu (ja) (sesame), or peanut tofu (Chinese 落花生豆腐 luòhuāshēng dòufu and Okinawan jīmāmi-dōfu (ja)).

The English term comes from Japanese tōfu (豆腐), borrowed from the original Chinese equivalent (豆腐 or 荳腐) transcribed tou4-fu3 (Wade-Giles) or dòufu (pinyin), literally "bean" (豆) + "curdled" or "fermented" (腐).

A reference to the word "towfu" exists in a letter dated 1770 from English merchant James Flint to United States statesman and scientist Benjamin Franklin. This is believed to be the first documented usage of the word in English.

The term "bean curd(s)" for tofu has been used in the United States since at least 1840. It is not frequently used, however, in the United Kingdom, Australia or New Zealand.

Tofu is made by coagulating soy milk and pressing the resulting curds. Although pre-made soy milk may be used, some tofu producers begin by making their own soy milk, which is produced by soaking, grinding, boiling and straining dried (or, less commonly, fresh) soybeans.

Coagulation of the protein and oil (emulsion) suspended in the boiled soy milk is the most important step in the production of tofu. This process is accomplished with the aid of coagulants. Two types of coagulants (salts and acids) are used commercially.

Calcium sulfate (gypsum): The traditional and most widely used coagulant to produce Chinese-style tofu. It produces a tofu that is tender but slightly brittle in texture. The coagulant itself has no perceivable taste. Use of this coagulant also makes a tofu that is rich in calcium. As such, many tofu manufacturers choose to use this coagulant to be able to market their tofu as a good source of dietary calcium.

Chloride-type Nigari salts or Lushui ( Traditional: 鹵水, 滷水; Simplified: 卤水, lǔshuǐ) – Magnesium chloride and calcium chloride: Both of these salts have a high solubility in water and affect soy protein in the same way, whereas gypsum is only very slightly soluble in water and acts differently in soy protein precipitation, the basis for tofu formation. These are the coagulants used to make tofu with a smooth and tender texture. In Japan, a white powder called nigari, which consists primarily of magnesium chloride, is produced from seawater after the sodium chloride is removed and the water evaporated. Depending on its production method, nigari/Lushui may also contain small quantities of magnesium sulfate (Epsom salt), potassium chloride, calcium chloride, and trace amounts of other naturally occurring salts. Although the term nigari is derived from nigai, the Japanese word for "bitter," neither nigari nor pure magnesium chloride imparts a perceivable taste to the finished tofu. Calcium chloride is a common coagulant for tofu in North America. Fresh clean sea water itself can also be used as a coagulant.

Glucono delta-lactone (GDL): A naturally occurring organic acid also used in cheese making, which produces a very fine textured tofu that is almost jelly-like. This coagulant is used especially for "silken" and softer tofus, and confers an almost imperceptible sour taste to the finished product. Commonly used together with calcium sulfate to give soft tofu a smooth tender texture.
Other edible acids: Though they can affect the taste of the tofu more, and vary in efficacy and texture, acids such as acetic acid (vinegar) and citric acid (such as lemon juice), can also be used to coagulate soy milk and produce tofu.

Among enzymes that have been shown to produce tofu are papain, and alkaline and neutral proteases from microorganisms. In the case of papain, the enzyme to substrate ratio, by weight, was held constant at 1:400. An aliquot of 1% crude papain was added to "uncooked" soy milk at room temperature and heated to 90–100 °C. Papain, moreover, has been studied as a gelling agent to produce "instant tofu" from soy protein isolate and soy glycinin (11S) protein.

Contemporary tofu manufacturers may choose to use one or more of these coagulants, since they each play a role in producing a desired texture in the finished tofu.Different textures result from different pore sizes and other microscopic features in tofus produced using each coagulant. The coagulant mixture is dissolved into water, and the solution is then stirred into boiled soy milk until the mixture curdles into a soft gel.

The curds are processed differently depending on the form of tofu that is being manufactured. For soft silken tofu (嫩豆腐; nèn dòufu) or tofu flower (豆花, dòuhuā) the soy milk is curdled directly in the tofu’s selling package. For standard firm Asian tofu, the soy curd is cut and strained of excess liquid using cheese cloth or muslin and then lightly pressed to produce a soft cake. Firmer tofus, such as Asian dry tofu (豆干) or Western types of tofu, are further pressed to remove even more liquid. In Vietnam, the curd is strained and molded in a square mold and the end product is called đậu khuôn (molded bean) or đậu phụ (one of the Vietnamese ways to pronounce the Chinese dòufu). The tofu curds are allowed to cool and become firm. The finished tofu can then be cut into pieces, flavored or further processed.

Although tartness is sometimes desired in dessert tofu, the acid used in flavoring is usually not the primary coagulant since it is not desirable to the flavor or texture of the resulting tofu to add it in a sufficiently high concentration so as to induce coagulation. A sour taste in tofu and a slight cloudiness in its storing liquid is also usually an indication of bacterial growth and, hence, spoilage.

There is a wide variety of tofu available in both Western and Eastern markets. Despite the large variety, tofu products can be split into two main categories: fresh tofu, which is produced directly from soy milk, and processed tofu, which is produced from fresh tofu. Tofu production also creates important side products which are often used in various cuisines.

Depending on the amount of water that is extracted from the tofu curds, fresh tofu can be divided into three main varieties. Fresh tofu is usually sold completely immersed in water to maintain its moisture content.

Soft/silken tofu (嫩豆腐 or 滑豆腐, nèn dòufu or huá dòufu, in Chinese, lit. "soft tofu" or "smooth tofu"; 絹漉し豆腐, kinugoshi tōfu in Japanese, lit. "silk-filtered tofu"; 순두부, 純豆腐, sundubu in Korean, lit. "pure tofu") is undrained, unpressed tofu that contains the highest moisture content of all fresh tofus. Silken tofu is produced by coagulating soy milk without curdling it. Silken tofu is available in several consistencies, including "soft" and "firm", but all silken tofu is more delicate than regular firm tofu (pressed tofu) and has different culinary uses. In Japan and Korea, traditional soft tofu is made with seawater. Silken tofu is a versatile, reliable substitute for dairy and eggs, especially for smoothies and baked desserts.

Douhua (豆花, dòuhuā or 豆腐花, dòufuhuā in Chinese), or tofu brain (豆腐腦 or 豆腐脑, dòufunaǒ in Chinese) is often eaten as a dessert, but sometimes salty pickles or hot sauce are added instead. This is a type of soft tofu with an even higher moisture content. Because it is very difficult to pick up with chopsticks, it is generally eaten with a spoon. With the addition of flavorings such as finely chopped spring onions, dried shrimp, soy sauce, chilli sauce, douhua is a popular breakfast dish across China. In Malaysia, douhua is usually served warm with white or dark (palm) sugar syrup, or served cold with longans.

Some variation exists among soft tofus. Black douhua (黑豆花, hēidòuhuā) is a type of silken tofu made from black soybeans, which is usually made into dòuhuā (豆花) rather than firm or dry tofu. The texture of black bean tofu is slightly more gelatinous than regular douhua and the color is greyish in tone. This type of tofu is eaten for the earthy "black bean taste." Edamame tofu is a Japanese variety of kinugoshi tōfu made from edamame (fresh green soybeans); it is pale green in color and often studded with whole edamame.

Firm tofu (called 老豆腐 lǎo dòufu in Chinese; 木綿豆腐, momen-dōfu in Japanese, lit. "cotton tofu"; 단단한두부, dandanhan dubu in Korean): Although drained and pressed, this form of fresh tofu still contains a great amount of moisture. It has the firmness of raw meat but bounces back readily when pressed. The texture of the inside of the tofu is similar to that of a firm custard. The skin of this form of tofu has the pattern of the muslin used to drain it and is slightly more resilient to damage than its inside. It can be picked up easily with chopsticks.

In some places in Japan, a very firm type of momen-dōfu is eaten, called ishi-dōfu (石豆腐; literally stone tofu) in parts of Ishikawa, or iwa-dōfu (岩豆腐; literally rock tofu) in Gokayama in the Toyama prefecture and in Iya in the prefecture of Tokushima. Due to their firmness, some of these types of tofu can be tied by rope and carried.[citation needed] These types of firm tofu are produced with seawater instead of nigari (magnesium chloride), or using concentrated soy milk. Some of them are squeezed of excess moisture using heavy weights. These products are produced in areas where travelling is inconvenient, such as remote islands, mountain villages, heavy snowfall areas, and so on.

Dòu gān (豆干, literally "dry tofu" in Chinese) is an extra firm variety of tofu where a large amount of liquid has been pressed out of the tofu. Dòu gān contains the least amount of moisture of all fresh tofu and has the firmness of fully cooked meat and a somewhat rubbery feel similar to that of paneer. When sliced thinly, this tofu can be crumbled easily. The skin of this form of tofu has the pattern of the muslin used to drain and press it. Western firm tofu is milled and reformed after the pressing and sometimes lacks the skin with its cloth patterning. One variety of dried tofu is pressed especially flat and sliced into long strings with a cross section smaller than 2 mm × 2 mm. Shredded dried tofu (豆干絲, dòugānsī in Chinese, or simply 干絲, gānsī), which looks like loose cooked noodles, can be served cold, stir-fried, or similar in style to Japanese aburaage.

Many forms of processed tofu exist, due to the varied ways in which fresh tofu can be used. Some of these techniques probably[citation needed] originate from the need to preserve tofu before the days of refrigeration, or to increase its shelf life and longevity. Other production techniques are employed to create tofus with unique textures and flavors.

Pickled tofu (豆腐乳 in Chinese, pinyin: dòufurǔ, lit. "tofu dairy," or 腐乳 fŭrŭ; chao in Vietnamese): Also called "preserved tofu" or "fermented tofu," this food consists of cubes of dried tofu that have been allowed to fully air-dry under hay and slowly ferment from aerial bacteria. The dry fermented tofu is then soaked in salt water, Chinese wine, vinegar, and minced chiles, or a unique mixture of whole rice, bean paste, and soybeans. In the case of red pickled tofu (紅豆腐乳 in Chinese, Pinyin: hóng dòufurǔ), red yeast rice (cultivated with Monascus purpureus) is added for color. And in Japan, pickled tofu with miso paste is called "tofu no misodzuke," which is a traditional preserved food in Kumamoto. In Okinawa, there is a pickled and fermented tofu called "tofuyo"(豆腐餻). It is made from "Shima-doufu" (an Okinawan variety of large and firm tofu). It is fermented, and matured with koji mold, red koji mold, and awamori.

Stinky tofu (臭豆腐 in Chinese, Pinyin: chòudòufu): A soft tofu that has been fermented in a unique vegetable and fish brine. The blocks of tofu smell strongly of certain pungent cheeses, and are described by many as rotten and fecal.[citation needed] Despite its strong odor, the flavor and texture of stinky tofu is appreciated by aficionados, who describe it as delightful. The texture of this tofu is similar to the soft Asian tofu from which it is made. The rind that stinky tofu develops from frying is said to be especially crisp, and is usually served with soy sauce, sweet sauce, or hot sauce.

Two kinds of dried tofu are produced in Japan. They are usually rehydrated (by being soaked in water) prior to consumption. In their dehydrated state they do not require refrigeration.

With the exception of the softest tofus, all forms of tofu can be fried. Thin and soft varieties of tofu are deep fried in oil until they are light and airy in their core 豆泡 dòupào, 豆腐泡 dòufupào, 油豆腐 yóudòufu, or 豆卜 dòubǔ in Chinese, literally "bean bubble," describing the shape of the fried tofu as a bubble).
Tofus such as firm Asian and dòu gān (Chinese dry tofu), with their lower moisture content, are cut into bite-sized cubes or triangles and deep fried until they develop a golden-brown, crispy surface (炸豆腐 in Chinese, zhádòufu, lit. "fried tofu"). These may be eaten on their own or with a light sauce, or further cooked in liquids; they are also added to hot pot dishes or included as part of the vegetarian dish called luohan zhai. This deep fried tofu is also called Atsuage (厚揚げ) or Namaage (生揚げ) in Japan. The thinner variety is called Aburaage (油揚げ) which develops a tofu pouch when fried that is often used for Inari-sushi.

Thousand layer tofu (千葉豆腐, 凍豆腐 dòngdòufu or 冰豆腐 bīngdòufu in Chinese, literally "thousand layer tofu" or "frozen tofu"): By freezing tofu, the large ice crystals that develop within the tofu result in the formation of large cavities that appear to be layered. The frozen tofu takes on a yellowish hue in the freezing process. Thousand layer tofu is commonly made at home from Asian soft tofu though it is also commercially sold as a specialty in parts of Taiwan. This tofu is defrosted, and sometimes pressed to remove moisture, prior to use.

Koya-dofu (kōya-dōfu, 高野豆腐 in Japanese): The name comes from Mount Koya, a center of Japanese Buddhism famed for its shōjin ryōri, or traditional Buddhist vegetarian cuisine. It is sold in freeze-dried blocks or cubes in Japanese markets. Since it is dried, it can be preserved for long term. It must be soaked in water before eating, and is typically simmered in dashi, sake or mirin and soy sauce. In shōjin ryōri, vegetarian kombu dashi, made from seaweed, is used. When prepared in the usual manner, it has a spongy texture and mild sweet and savory flavor (the taste and flavor depend on what soup or cooking stock it was simmered in). A similar form of freeze-dried tofu, in smaller pieces, is found in instant soups (such as miso soup), in which the toppings are freeze-dried and stored in sealed pouches.

Tofu production creates some edible byproducts. Food products are made from the protein-oil film, or "skin," which forms over the surface of boiling soy milk in an open shallow pan. The leftover solids from pressing soy milk are called okara.

Tofu skin is produced through the boiling of soy milk, in an open shallow pan, thus producing a film or skin composed primarily of a soy protein-lipid complex on the liquid surface. The films are collected and dried into yellowish sheets known as soy milk skin (腐皮, fǔpí in Chinese; 湯葉, yuba in Japanese). Its approximate composition is : 50–55% protein, 24–26% lipids (fat), 12% carbohydrate, 3% ash, and 9% moisture.

The skin can also be bunched up to stick form and dried into something known as "tofu bamboo" (腐竹, fǔ zhú in Chinese; phù trúc in Vietnamese; kusatake, Japanese), or myriad other forms. Since tofu skin has a soft yet rubbery texture, it is folded or shaped into different forms and cooked further to imitate meat in vegan cuisine.

Some factories dedicate production to tofu skin and other soy membrane products.

Okara (from the Japanese, おから, okara; known as 雪花菜, xuěhuācài, in Chinese, lit. "snowflake vegetable"; 豆腐渣, dòufuzhā, also Chinese, lit. "tofu sediment/residue"; and 콩비지, kongbiji, in Korean), is a tofu by-product, sometimes known in the west as "soy pulp" or "tofu lees",[40] consisting of the fiber, protein, and starch left over when soy milk has been extracted from ground soaked soybeans. Although it is mainly used as animal feed in most tofu producing cultures, it is sometimes used in Japanese and Korean cuisines, such as in the Korean stew kongbiji jjigae (콩비지찌개). It is also an ingredient for vegetarian burgers produced in many western nations.

Due to their Asian origins and their textures, many food items are called "tofu" even though their production processes are not technically similar. For instance, many sweet almond tofus are actually gelatinous desserts hardened using agar or gelatin. As well, some foods such as Burmese tofu are not coagulated from the "milk" of the legume but rather set in a manner similar to soft polenta, Korean muk, or the jidou liangfen of Yunnan province of Southwest China.

The "almond tofu" (Chinese: 杏仁豆腐 xìngrén dòufu; Japanese: annindōfu) is a milky white and gelatinous resembling tofu, but does not use soy products or soy milk and is hardened with agar. A similar dessert made with coconut milk or mango juices might occasionally be referred to as "coconut tofu" or "mango tofu", though such names are also given to hot dishes that use soy tofu and coconut or mango in the recipe.

Egg tofu (ja) (Japanese: 玉子豆腐, 卵豆腐, tamagodōfu) (Chinese: 蛋豆腐, dàn dòufu; often called 日本豆腐, rìbĕn dòufu, lit. "Japan bean curd") is the main type of savory flavored tofu. Whole beaten eggs are combined with dashi, poured into molds, and steamed in a steamer (cf. chawanmushi). The tofu has a pale golden color that can be attributed to the addition of egg and, occasionally, food coloring. This tofu has a fuller texture and flavor than silken tofu, which can be attributed to the presence of egg fat and protein. Plain "dried tofu" can be flavored by stewing in soysauce (滷) to make soy-sauce tofu. It is quite common to see tofu sold in market in this soy-sauce stewed form.

The goma-dōfu (ja) is made by grinding sesame into a smooth paste, combining with liquid and kudzu starch, and heating until curdling occurs. It is often served chilled as hiyayakko.

In Okinawa, Japan, the jīmāmi-dōfu (ja) is made in a process similar to the sesame tofu. A peanut milk (made by crushing raw peanuts, adding water and straining) is combined with starch (usually sweet potato starch known locally as umukuji or umukashi (芋澱粉?)) and heating until curdling occurs.

The Chinese equivalent is the 落花生豆腐 luòhuāshēng dòufu.

Burmese tofu (to hpu in Burmese) is a type of legume product made from besan (chana dal) flour; the Shan variety uses yellow split pea flour instead. Both types are yellow in color and generally found only in Myanmar, though the Burman variety is also available in some overseas restaurants serving Burmese cuisine.

Burmese tofu may be fried as fritters cut in rectangular or triangular shapes. Rice tofu, called hsan to hpu (or hsan ta hpo in Shan regions) is made from rice flour (called hsan hmont or mont hmont) and is white in color, with the same consistency as yellow Burmese tofu when set. It is eaten as a salad in the same manner as yellow tofu.

Tofu has very little flavor or smell on its own. Consequently, tofu can be prepared either in savory or sweet dishes, acting as a bland background for presenting the flavors of the other ingredients used. As a method of flavoring it is often marinated in soy sauce, chilis, sesame oil, etc.

In Asian cooking, tofu is eaten in myriad ways, including raw, stewed, stir-fried, in soup, cooked in sauce, or stuffed with fillings. The idea of using tofu as a meat substitute is not common in East Asia. Many Chinese tofu dishes such as jiācháng dòufu (家常豆腐) and mápó dòufú (麻婆豆腐) include meat.

In Japan, a common lunch in the summer months is hiyayakko (冷奴), silken or firm Asian tofu served with freshly grated ginger, green onions, or katsuobushi shavings with soy sauce. In the winter, tofu is frequently eaten as "yudofu," which is simmered in a claypot with some vegetables (ex:chinese cabbage, green onion etc.) using konbu dashi.

In Chinese cuisine, Dòuhuā (豆花) is served with toppings such as boiled peanuts, azuki beans, cooked oatmeal, tapioca, mung beans and a syrup flavored with ginger or almond. During the summer, "dòuhuā" is served with crushed ice; in the winter, it is served warm.[43] And also, in many parts of China, fresh tofu is similarly eaten with soy sauce or further flavored with katsuobushi shavings, century eggs (皮蛋 pídàn), and sesame seed oil.

In Korean cuisine, dubu gui (두부구이) consists of pan fried cubes of firm tofu, seasoned with soy sauce, garlic, and other ingredients. Cubes of cold, uncooked firm tofu seasoned with soy sauce, scallions, and ginger, prepared in a manner similar to the Japanese hiyayakko, are also enjoyed. The popular bar food, or anju (안주), called dubu kimchi (두부김치), features boiled, firm tofu served in rectangular slices around the edges of a plate with pan fried, sautéed or freshly mixed kimchi (김치) in the middle.

In the Philippines, the sweet delicacy taho is made of fresh tofu with brown sugar syrup and sago. The Malaysian version of taho or douhua is called tofufa. Warm soft tofu is served in "slices" (due to being scooped using a flat spoon from a wooden bucket) in a bowl with either pandan-flavored sugar syrup or palm sugar syrup.

In Vietnam, dòuhuā is pronounced đậu hủ. This variety of soft tofu is made and carried around in an earthenware jar. It is served by being scooped into a bowl with a very shallow and flat spoon, and eaten with either powdered sugar and lime juice or with a ginger-flavored syrup. It is generally eaten hot, even during summer.

A common cooking technique in many parts of East and Southeast Asia involves deep frying tofu in vegetable oil, sunflower oil, or canola oil with varied results. In Indonesia, it is usually fried in palm oil. Although tofu is often sold preprocessed into fried items, pre-fried tofu is seldom eaten directly and requires additional cooking. Depending on the type of tofu used, the texture of deep fried tofu may range from crispy on the outside and custardy on the inside, to puffed up like a plain doughnut. The former is usually eaten plain in Chinese cuisine with garlic soy sauce, while the latter is either stuffed with fish paste to make Yong Tau Foo or cooked in soups. In Taiwan, fried tofu is made into a dish called "A-gei", which consists of a fried aburage tofu package stuffed with noodles and capped with surimi.

In Japan, cubes of lightly coated and fried tofu topped with a kombu dashi-based sauce are called agedashi-dofu (揚げ出し豆腐). Soft tofu that has been thinly sliced and deep fried, known as aburage in Japan and yubu (유부) in Korea, is commonly blanched, seasoned with soy sauce and mirin and served in dishes such as kitsune udon. Aburage is sometimes also cut open to form a pocket and stuffed with sushi rice; this dish is called inarizushi (稲荷寿司) and is also popular in Korea, where it is called yubu chobap (유부초밥). In Indonesia, tofu is called tahu, and the popular fried tofu is tahu goreng, tahu isi and tahu sumedang.

A spicy Sichuan preparation using firm Asian tofu is mápó dòufu (麻婆豆腐). This involves braised tofu in a beef, chili, and a fermented bean paste sauce. A vegetarian version is known as málà dòufu (麻辣豆腐)[citation needed].

Dried tofu is usually not eaten raw but first stewed in a mixture of soy sauce and spices.[citation needed] Some types of dried tofu are pre-seasoned with special blends of spices, so that the tofu may either be called "five spice tofu" (五香豆腐 wǔxiāng dòufu) or "soy sauce stewed tofu" (鹵水豆腐 lǔshuǐ dòufu). Dried tofu is typically served thinly sliced with chopped green onions or with slices of meat for added flavor. Most dried tofu is sold after it has been fried or pre-stewed by tofu vendors.

Soft tofu can also be broken up or mashed and mixed with raw ingredients prior to being cooked. For example, Japanese ganmodoki is a mixture of chopped vegetables and mashed tofu. The mixture is bound together with starch and deep fried. Chinese families sometimes make a steamed meatloaf or meatball dish from equal parts of coarsely mashed tofu and ground pork. In India, tofu is also used as a low fat replacement for paneer providing the same texture with similar taste.

Tofu bamboos are often used in lamb stew or in a dessert soup. Tofu skins are often used as wrappers in dim sum. Freeze-dried tofu and frozen tofu are rehydrated and enjoyed in savory soups. These products are often taken along on camping trips since a small bag of these dried tofu can provide protein for many days.

Japanese ‘miso soup’, stocks with miso paste, is frequently made with tofu.

In Korean cuisine, soft tofu, called sundubu (순두부), is used to make a thick stew called sundubu jjigae (순두부 찌개). Firm, diced tofu often features in the staple stews doenjang jjigae (된장 찌개) and kimchi jjigae (김치

At Qufu, the home town of Confucius, smoked tofu is a popular dish.

Bacem is a method of cooking tofu originating from Java, Indonesia. The tofu is boiled in coconut water, mixed with lengkuas (galangal), Indonesian bay leaves, coriander, shallot, garlic, tamarind and palm sugar. After the spicy coconut water has completely evaporated, the tofu is fried until it is golden brown. The result is sweet, spicy, and crisp. This cooked tofu variant is commonly known as tahu bacem in Indonesian. Tahu bacem is commonly prepared along with tempeh and chicken.

Pickled tofu is commonly used in small amounts together with its soaking liquid to flavor stir-fried or braised vegetable dishes (particularly leafy green vegetables like water spinach). It is often eaten directly as a condiment with rice or congee.

Generally, the firmer styles of tofu are used for kebabs, mock meats, and dishes requiring a consistency that holds together, while the softer styles can be used for desserts, soups, shakes, and sauces.

Firm western tofus can be barbecued since they will hold together on a barbecue grill. These types of tofu are usually marinated overnight as the marinade does not easily penetrate the entire block of tofu (techniques to increase penetration of marinades are stabbing repeatedly with a fork or freezing and thawing prior to marinating). Grated firm western tofu is sometimes used in conjunction with TVP as a meat substitute. Softer tofus are sometimes used as a dairy-free or low-calorie filler. Silken tofu may be used to replace cheese in certain dishes (such as lasagna).

Tofu has also been fused into other cuisines in the west, for instance used in Indian-style curries.

Tofu and soy protein can be industrially processed to match the textures and flavors to the likes of cheese, pudding, eggs, bacon, etc. Tofu’s texture can also be altered by freezing, pureeing, and cooking. In the Americas, Europe, Australia and New Zealand, tofu is frequently associated with vegetarianism and veganism as it is a source of non-animal protein.

The most commonly held of the three theories of tofu’s origin maintains that tofu was invented in northern China around 164 BC by Lord Liu An, a Han Dynasty prince. Although this is possible, the paucity of concrete information about this period makes it difficult to conclusively determine whether Liu An invented the method for making tofu. Furthermore, in Chinese history, important inventions were often attributed to important leaders and figures of the time. In 1960, a stone mural unearthed from an Eastern Han dynasty tomb provided support for the theory of Han origin of tofu, however some scholars maintained that the tofu in Han dynasty was rudimentary, and lacked the firmness and taste of real tofu.

Another theory states that the production method for tofu was discovered accidentally when a slurry of boiled, ground soybeans was mixed with impure sea salt. Such sea salt would probably have contained calcium and magnesium salts, allowing the soy mixture to curdle and produce a tofu-like gel. This may have possibly been the way that tofu was discovered, since soy milk has been eaten as a savory soup in ancient as well as modern times. Its technical plausibility notwithstanding, there is little evidence to prove or disprove that tofu production originated in this way.

The last group of theories maintains that the ancient Chinese learned the method for the curdling of soy milk by emulating the milk curdling techniques of the Mongolians or East Indians. For, despite their advancement, no technology or knowledge of culturing and processing milk products existed within ancient Chinese society. (They did not seek such technology, probably because of the Confucian taboo on fermented dairy products and other so-called "barbarian foodstuffs".) The primary evidence for this theory lies with the etymological similarity between the Chinese term for Mongolian fermented milk (rufu, which literally means "milk curdled") and the term doufu ("beans curdled") or tofu. Although intriguing and possible, there is no evidence to substantiate this theory beyond the point of academic speculation.

Tofu originated in ancient China,[5] although little else is known about the exact historic origins of tofu and of its method of production.

The theory that tofu was invented by Lord Liu An of Huainan in about 164 BC (early Han dynasty) has steadily lost favor among most scholars in China and abroad since the 1970s. The claim concerning Liu An was first made by Zhu Xi during the Song dynasty (960-1127 AD) – roughly 1,000 years after the supposed invention.

The theory that tofu-making is shown in a mural incised on a stone slab in Han Tomb No. 1, at Da-hu-ting, Mixian, Henan province attracted much attention after about 1990. Yet it too has lost favor because (1) no step of cooking the soy puree is shown in the mural, and (2) when Chinese food historians tried to make tofu without cooking the puree, the result was a tiny amount of unpalatable material.

Thus, while there are many theories regarding tofu’s origins, historical information is scarce enough as to relegate the status of most theories to either speculation or legend. Like the origins of cheese and butter, the exact origin of tofu production may never be known or proven. The historical era starts in the year 965 AD (early Song dynasty) with the Qing Yilu by Tao Ku.

What is known is that tofu production is an ancient technique. Tofu was widely consumed in ancient China, and techniques for its production and preparation were eventually spread to many other parts of Asia.

Its development likely preceded Liu An, as tofu is known to have been a commonly produced and consumed food item in China by the 2nd century BC. Although the varieties of tofu produced in ancient times may not have been identical to those of today, descriptions from writings and poetry of the Song and Yuan Dynasty show that the production technique for tofu had already been standardized by then, to the extent that they would be similar to tofu of contemporary times.

In China, tofu is traditionally used as a food offering when visiting the graves of deceased relatives. It is claimed that the spirits (or ghosts) have long lost their chins and jaws, and that only tofu is soft enough for them to eat. Before refrigeration was available in China, tofu was often only sold during the winter time, due to the tofu not spoiling in the colder weather. During the warmer months, any leftover tofu would be spoiled if left for more than a day. Chinese war hero Guan Yu used to be a tofu maker before he enlisted in the army. Chinese martial arts expert and hero, Yim Wing-chun, was a celebrated tofu maker in her village. (Tofu as such plays a part in the 1994 movie about her life, Wing Chun.)

Tofu and its production technique were subsequently introduced into Korea and then Japan in the Nara period (late 8th century) as well as other parts of East Asia. The earliest document of tofu in Japan shows that the dish was served as an offering at the Kasuga Shrine in Nara in 1183. The book Tofu Hyakuchin (豆腐百珍 Dòufu Bǎizhēn), published in the Edo period, lists 100 recipes for cooking tofu.

The rise in acceptance of tofu likely coincided with that of Buddhism as it is an important source of proteins in the religion’s vegetarian diet. Since then, tofu has become a staple in many countries, including Vietnam, Thailand, and Korea, with subtle regional variations in production methods, texture, flavor, and usage.

In Southeast Asia, tofu was introduced to the region by Chinese immigrants from sea-faring Fujian province, evident from the fact that many countries in Southeast Asia refer to tofu by the Min Nan Chinese pronunciations for either soft and firm tofu, or "tāu-hū" and "tāu-goan" respectively. In Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and the Philippines, tofu is widely available and used in many local dishes. Tofu is called tahu in Indonesia, Indonesian dishes such as, tahu sumbat, taoge tahu, asinan, siomay and some curries, are often add slices of tofu as ingredients. In addition, tahu goreng, tahu isi and tahu sumedang are the popular fried tofu snacks. Tofu is called tauhu in Malaysia and Singapore. The Malaysian and Singaporean Indians use tofu in their cuisine such as Indian mee goreng, rojak pasembor. The strait peranakan cuisine often uses tofu, such as mee kari Penang, and laksa. The makers of tofu in these countries were originally the Chinese but tofu now is made by non-Chinese as well. Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia and the Philippines are major producers of tofu and have plants located within many municipalities. However, Singapore imports its tofu from its neighboring country, Malaysia.

Tofu in the Philippines is essential to the daily diet, as taho, widely eaten as breakfast, or tokwa (a dry fried variation), which is a staple or alternative to meat in main meals, and in numerous regional dishes. Tofu was introduced to the archipelago in the 10th to 13th centuries by Song Chinese mariners and merchants, along with many different foods which had become staples of the Philippine diet. The use and production of tofu were first limited to urban centers with influential Chinese minorities, such as Cebu or Tondo, but were quickly spread to even remote native villages and islands, long before the Spanish arrival in the 17th century.

Benjamin Franklin was the first American to mention tofu in a 1770 letter to John Bartram. Franklin, who discovered it during a trip to London, included a few soybeans and referred to it as "cheese" from China. The first tofu company in the United States was established in 1878. In 1908 Li Yuying, a Chinese anarchist and a vegetarian with a French degree in agriculture and biology, opened a soy factory, the Usine de la Caséo-Sojaïne, which was the world’s first soy dairy and the first factory in France to manufacture and sell beancurd. However tofu was not well known to most Westerners before the middle of the 20th century. With increased cultural contact between the West and East Asia and growing interest in vegetarianism, knowledge of tofu has become widespread. Numerous types of pre-flavored tofu can be found in many supermarket chains throughout the West. It is also used by many vegans and vegetarians as a means to gain protein without the consumption of meat products.

Tofu is considered a cool agent in Traditional Chinese medicine. It is claimed to invigorate the spleen, replenish qi, moisture and cool off Yang vacuity, and to detoxify the body. However, there is no scientific evidence supporting neither such claims, nor their implied notions.

In Chinese traditional medicine, tofu is suitable for those who are weak, malnourished, deficient in blood and qi; is suitable for old, slim or otherwise; suitable for those with high fat content in blood, high cholesterol, overweight, and with hardened blood vessels; suitable for people with diabetes; for mothers with low breast milk supply; for children and young adults; for those with inflamed respiratory tract, with phlegm, coughing and asthma. Tofu is also suited for people of old age; it is recommended to eat with liquor, since tofu contains cysteine, which can speed up the detoxification of alcohol in the body, and lessen the harm done to the liver, protecting the liver.

Tofu is relatively high in protein, about 10.7% for firm tofu and 5.3% for soft "silken" tofu with about 5% and 2% fat respectively as a percentage of weight.

In 1995, a report from the University of Kentucky, financed by Solae, concluded that soy protein is correlated with significant decreases in serum cholesterol, Low Density Lipoprotein LDL (″bad cholesterol″) and triglyceride concentrations. However, High Density Lipoprotein HDL (″good cholesterol″) did not increase. Soy phytoestrogens (isoflavones: genistein and daidzein) absorbed onto the soy protein were suggested as the agent reducing serum cholesterol levels. On the basis of this research, PTI, in 1998, filed a petition with Food and Drug Administration for a health claim that soy protein may reduce cholesterol and the risk of heart disease.

The FDA granted this health claim for soy: "25 grams of soy protein a day, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease." For reference, 100 grams of firm tofu coagulated with calcium sulfate contains 8.19 grams of soy protein. In January 2006, an American Heart Association review (in the journal Circulation) of a decade-long study of soy protein benefits showed only a minimal decrease in cholesterol levels, but it compared favorably against animal protein sources.

Because it is made of soy, individuals with allergies, particularly those allergic to legumes, should not consume tofu.


Posted by asienman on 2014-08-24 21:13:34

Tagged: , Myanmar , Burma , Inle Lake , asienman-photography

British foods with strange names

British foods with strange names

Misunderstood British Foods …. with funny names

Toad in the hole

Perhaps Britain’s least appetisingly-named meal, this dish of sausages in Yorkshire pudding batter is said to have gained its unusual moniker because it looks like toads popping their heads from a hole (yes, we know, we can’t really see it either). Can’t stand the dish? At least you’re not eating it in the Victorian period, when it was common to use any available meat, however old or unpleasant. Mrs Beeton suggests rump steak and lamb kidney.

Bubble and squeak

Once upon a time, thrifty Britons with left-over vegetabes and potatoes from a roast dinner wouldn’t have even considered throwing them away – they’d have fried the remnants up to make bubble and squeak. The name comes from the sizzling noise the vegetables make in the pan, though it could also adequately describe the horrified sounds your children emit next time you propose to cook it.

Spotted dick

The cause of much hilarity among schoolchildren, spotted dick is an old-fashioned steamed pudding which dates back to at least the 1800s. The "spotted" refers to the dried fruit, while "dick" may be a corruption of the word pudding. The dish made national news in 2009, when the red-faced staff at Flintshire County Council decided to rename it the rather more polite "Spotted Richard."

Welsh rarebit/rabbit

Tourists in Wales must be regularly disappointed to find that the traditional "rabbit" they’ve ordered is little more than a gourmet version of cheese on toast. The name is said to be something of an English joke, coined in the 18th century when many Welsh were so poor they could not even afford a cheap meat like rabbit. Hilarious…

Cullen skink

A speciality from the town of Cullen on Scotlands north-east coast, Cullen skink is a thick soup made from haddock, poatoes and onions. Theories as to where the word "skink" comes from differ: it may be a variation on the Scots skink, meaning soup made from shin of beef.

Stargazey pie

Stargazey pie sounds rather quaint, but this Cornish dish of pilchards baked under a pastry crust won’t appeal to everyone – it traditionally has fish heads poking through the crust, so they appear to be gazing up at the sky. Legend has it that the dish originates from the village of Mousehole, where a plucky fisherman called Tom Bawcock once saved his fellow villagers from starvation by braving the stormy seas to catch a record haul. The fish were baked poking out of the pies, to prove to everyone that there was fish inside.

Singing hinnies

A rather delightful name for a northern dish of currant cakes cooked on a griddle. "Singing" refers to the sizzling sound of the cakes as they cook in fat, while "hinny" is, of course, a northern term of endearment.

Angels on horseback

his traditional Victorian appetizer of oysters wrapped in bacon and grilled is little known today. But the snack’s dastardly cousin, the devil on horseback (prunes or dates wraped in bacon, pictured right) is still a common feature of our Christmas dinners.

Jam roly poly

This traditional British pudding owes its charmingly childish name to the fact that making it involves rolling up a suet pudding in a Swiss-role style. Even stranger is its nickname, "dead man’s arm" or "dead man’s" leg", so-called because the jam-filled pudding was often wrapped up to steam in an old shirt sleeve.

Love in disguise

Can’t get your family to embrace offal? In times gone by, the solution was simply to give it a fancy-sounding name. "Love in diguise" is, in fact, a stuffed calf’s heart. Mmm….


This is an unusual Scottish meal that is definitely an acquired taste. When you find out what goes into it you can only conclude that it was all they had left to use because somebody had taken everything else worth eating. It’s therefore not surprising that it’s appearance in popular culture is during the 1500’s when the average person Scotland was experiencing severe hardships caused by their own leaders as well as their English overlords. Haggis is made from the heart, liver and lungs of a sheep which is minced and mixed with oatmeal, animal fat or suet, and onions. It is flavoured with salt and pepper before being stuffed into a cleaned sheep’s stomach and then boiled for a few hours. Modern versions tend to now use artificial casings. Once cut or split the Haggis has a crumbly texture and is traditionally served with neeps and tatties (yellow turnip and potatoes) The original version may well date back to the Roman occupation of Britain during the 1st to the 4th centuries AD. Millions of Haggis are produced every year and shipped to every part of the world where Scottish communities traditionally serve it as part of the Burns Night celebrations.

Black Pudding

This is the British version of blutwurst and is usually made from a mixture of congealed pigs blood, lard and oatmeal. In Britain the quantity of cereal used is larger than other similar products found around the world. Common seasonings usually include salt, pepper, cloves and onions. It is generally served sliced and fried as part of a traditional English breakfast. The best black pudding is said to come from Bury in Lancashire where it has been considered a local specialty since the 1800’s. In this region it is still common for it to be served boiled and seasoned with vinegar. In general, blood sausage originates even further back in history and it is likely that it was made before the middle ages and is almost always found in regions where it was common to keep pigs as livestock. Fairly recently some fast food shops have started serving black pudding battered and deep fried. You will either love it or hate it. Black Pudding looks greasy but has a dry texture in the mouth and a strong flavour.


Many English wrinkle their noses at the idea of happy French people gobbling down servings of snails doused with garlic and yet one of the great traditional foods of northern England is the common periwinkle, a form of sea snail. The winkle isn’t large and after they’ve been collected they need to be soaked in fresh water for 12 hours to remove excess sand and salt. Once cleaned, they are boiled and the flesh is then picked out of the shell with a pin giving rise to the term winkle-pickers. They are best served with salt, garlic and butter but can also be served soaked in vinegar if a more piquant flavour is desired. They are generally found on the west coast of England and other Atlantic coastlines. Although quite easy to harvest it takes a lot of winkles to make a meal and many considered it simply not worth the effort. Because they are so small they were often measured in pints and two full beer mugs is said to be able to feed six children or four adults. Also known as Littorina littorea, this little sea snail still remains a popular treat for those who have learnt to enjoy them.

Laver bread

The best way to describe this food is that it is green, slimy and looks like badly boiled cabbage. And … it’s not bread at all its seaweed. Welcome to the Welsh delicacy: Laver bread. Laver grows well around the west coast of England but can also be found off the coast of Japan and Korea. The purple variety is considered best and after it has been washed it will need to be boiled for several hours. It is then pureed or minced and so becomes the green gelatinous mass in the picture. Apparently, it can be fried and served with bacon, rolled in oats to form a patty or even used as a straightforward vegetable accompaniment for lamb or mutton. As with many foods that look revolting it is said to be very good for you as it is high vegetable protein, iodine and iron as well as several other important vitamins. Laver bread is known as Nori in Japan where they simply can’t get enough of it. It’s a pity that Laver bread looks like slimy spinach because it’s said to be tasty and very good for you. Experts claim it has undertones of olives and oysters.


The name of this meal is sure to trouble people from the USA. Originally a faggot was a meatball made from a bundle of off-cut meats including the belly, liver and heart of a pig. The meat mixture would then be blended with breadcrumbs and onions before being packed into a caul. (membrane). Faggots became very popular during the hard times of WWII and are still sold in butchers and supermarkets. The most well known brand is Mr Brains. Unfortunately the name has also had some problematic associations over the centuries. At various times it has also been used to describe a bundle of sticks, an unpleasant old women, a burning torch and more recently the derogatory term for a homosexual man. How the name of a food became a term for homosexuality is still debated and ranges from the mistranslation of the yiddish word faygeleh (little bird) to the 19th century all-boy private schools of England. Regardless of the fact that there is a vast variety of remarkable foods available from every corner of the World it is estimated that tens of millions of Faggots are still eaten every year.

Scotch Eggs

A Scotch egg consists of a hard-boiled egg wrapped in sausage meat, coated in bread crumbs and baked or deep-fried.

The London department store Fortnum & Mason claims to have invented Scotch eggs in 1738, but they may have been inspired by the Mughlai dish nargisi kofta ("Narcissus meatballs").

The earliest printed recipe appears in the 1809 edition of Mrs. Rundell’s A New System of Domestic Cookery. Mrs. Rundell—and later 19th-century authors—served them hot, with gravy.

Jellied Eels

At one point, the river Thames, which runs through London, was so polluted that the only fish that could survive within its foul depths was the eel. As a result, London’s poor communities, who worked on the river, tended to have a lot of eel-based recipes. There’s even a district of London called Eel Pie Island. Trouble was, in the days before refrigerators, the only way to store uneaten meat was smoking it, or encasing it in gelatin, a tradition that goes back way before Roman times. So, jellied eels are just bits of eel, in fish-flavor jelly, with spices or malt vinegar heaped on top. Turn your nose up if you must, but you’re mocking generations of working class Londoners if you do so. Luckily most of them are dead, so it’s probably fine.

Mushy Peas

Marrowfat peas and a little bit of bicarbonate of soda, that’s the secret. The greatest British contribution to world food is clearly cheddar cheese, but fish and chips runs it a close second, and if you’re going to have fish and chips, you need to have mushy peas. There is just something about the combination of flavors, from the fried potato and battered haddock or cod, to the malt vinegar, salt and pillow-soft peas, that is just heavenly. Save it for your non-salad days, of course, but don’t miss out.


Cornish Yarg is a semi-hard cow’s milk cheese made in Cornwall, England, United Kingdom from the milk of Friesian cows. Before being left to mature, this cheese is wrapped in nettle leaves to form an edible, though mouldy, rind. The texture varies from creamy and soft immediately under the nettle coating to a Caerphilly cheese-like crumbly texture in the middle.

Modern production is at Pengreep farm near Truro, by Lynher Dairies from an old recipe. "Yarg" is simply "Gray" spelt backwards. It is named after Allan and Jenny Gray, the couple who gave the recipe to Pengreep Farm in the 1970s. Lynher Dairies work from a recipe by Gervase Markham dated to 1615. The original recipe is thought to date back to the 13th century.

Yarg is produced solely in Cornwall by Lynher Dairies and has never been manufactured on a mass scale. It was first made by the Grays at Withiel from 1984 to 2006 at Netherton Farm near Upton Cross, Cornwall, by Lynher Dairies. From 2001 it has been made at Pengreep.

Another version of the cheese is Cornish Wild Garlic Yarg which is covered with wild garlic leaves.

Stottie Cakes

Stotties tend to be eaten split and filled. Common fillings include ham and pease pudding, but also bacon, egg and sausage. The heavy texture of the bread gives it its name. To ‘stott’ is Geordie meaning ‘to bounce because if dropped it would (in theory) bounce. Stotting is also used by biologists to describe the jumping behaviour of antelopes in response to predators.

Though originating in the North East, stotties can be found in most parts of Britain, although rarely in the south, and have been offered for sale in branches of Greggs, Morrisons and Waitrose. Stotties sold by supermarkets tend to resemble stottie only in shape: The bread is lighter and more crumbly, resembling a bread roll more faithfully than a baker’s stottie.


Nineteenth-century sailors made lobscouse by boiling salted meat, onions and pepper, with ship’s biscuit used to thicken the dish. Modern English scouse resembles the Norwegian stew lapskaus, although it differs from the German labskaus which is similar to corned beef. Scouse is a stew, similar to Lancashire hotpot, usually of mutton, lamb (often neck) or beef with vegetables, typically potatoes, carrots and onions. It is commonly served with pickled beetroot or cabbage and bread.

Lancashire hotpot

Lancashire hotpot is a dish made traditionally from lamb or mutton and onion, topped with sliced potatoes, left to bake in the oven all day in a heavy pot and on a low heat. Originating in the days of heavy industrialisation in Lancashire in the North West of England, it requires a minimum of effort to prepare.

Heavy cake or Hevva Cake

Heavy cake or Hevva cake (Cornish: Hevva) is a cake made from flour, lard, butter, milk, sugar and raisins that originated in Cornwall.

Its name is derived from the pilchard industry in Cornwall prior to the 20th century when a ‘huer’ (cliff top lookout) helped locate shoals of fish. The huer would shout ‘Hevva!, Hevva!’ to alert the boats to the location of the pilchard shoals.

Cornish tradition states that Hevva cake was baked by the huers on their return to their homes, the cake being ready by the time the crews returned to land.

The cakes are about 1/2", with a criss-cross pattern scored across the top, representing the fishing nets.

Black Bun

Black bun is a type of fruit cake completely covered with pastry. It is Scottish in origin, originally eaten on Twelfth Night but now enjoyed at Hogmanay. The cake mixture typically contains raisins, currants, almonds, citrus peel, allspice, ginger, cinnamon and black pepper. It had originally been introduced following the return of Mary, Queen of Scots from France, but its original use at Twelfth Night ended with the Scottish Reformation. It was subsequently used for first-footing over Hogmanay.


A medium-hard, sugary confection from Scotland. Tablet is usually made from sugar, condensed milk, and butter, which is boiled to a soft-ball stage and allowed to crystallize. It is often flavoured with vanilla or whisky, and sometimes has nut pieces in it.

Tablet differs from fudge in that it has a brittle, grainy texture, where fudge is much softer. Well-made tablet is a medium-hard confection, not as soft as fudge, but not as hard as hard candy.

Soor Plooms

A Soor ploom (Scots for "sour plum") is a sharp flavoured, round, green boiled sweet originally associated with Galashiels, Scotland. They are sold loose by weight in paper bags, traditionally in "quarters" — a quarter of a pound.

They are said to have been first made in 1337 in commemoration of a skirmish near Galashiels. A raiding party from England were overwhelmed and killed by local men when discovered eating unripe plums.

A "childhood favourite," they are pale green and "slightly acid in flavour". They have been featured in Oor Wullie and The Broons cartoons.

"Soor Plooms" is the motto of the town Galashiels.

There is a Border pipe tune from 1700 called "Soor Plooms of Galashiels".

Berwick Cockles

A Berwick cockle is a Scots style sweet (candy) coloured white with red stripes originally associated with Berwick-upon-Tweed. These mints have been made since 1801. They are presumably named in reference to their cockle-like shape, the moulding process giving a flattened shape with an equatorial rib. They are sold loose by weight in paper bags, traditionally in "quarters"—a quarter of a pound. They were originally made and sold in Berwick by the Cowe family from their shop in Bridge Street. The current "post-Cowe" version is described by internet vendors as a "crumbly" mint. However, the original Cowe product was a hard mint.

Lucky Tatties

The lucky tattie is a type of traditional sweet made in Scotland. The lucky tattie is flavoured with cassia, and steamed and covered with cinnamon powder.

Ecclefechan Tart

Named for the village of Ecclefechan, near Dumfries, these tarts can be big or small. Pastry, treacly dried fruit, and nuts all combine to create something that makes mince pies look measly.

Ecclefechan Tart and a blended Scotch whisky called "The Fechan" whose label denotes the Arched House, which gained local notoriety with the tag line "Gie us The Fechan whisky". The Ecclefechan Tart gained national prominence in late 2007 when the supermarket Sainsbury’s promoted it as an alternative to mince pies at Christmas, and the tarts sold over 50,000 packs in November 2007. A version made by the Moray confectioner Walkers is now nationally available in the United Kingdom.

Bedfordshire Clanger

The Bedfordshire Clanger is a dish from the English county of Bedfordshire, dating back to at least the 19th century. The clanger is an elongated suet crust dumpling similar to a pasty, with a savoury filling at one end and a sweet filling at the other, comprising a main course and dessert in one package. It is traditionally steamed but may be baked for robustness. The crust was not originally intended for consumption but to protect the fillings from the soiled hands of the workers.

The savoury end is traditionally meat with diced potatoes and vegetables (although a filling without meat is also possible), and the sweet end is usually jam, or sweetened apple or other fruit. Traditionally the top of the clanger is scored with a few lines to denote the sweet end.

Historically, the Bedfordshire Clanger was made by women for their husbands to take to their agricultural work as a midday meal. The dish is still available at various bakers and served at some hotels, restaurants and local places of interest.

A similar, but entirely savoury, dish comes from Buckinghamshire. Known as the Buckinghamshire Bacon Badger, it is made from bacon, potatoes and onions which are enclosed in a pastry case.


A traditional Scottish dessert. In modern times it is usually made from a mixture of whipped cream, whisky, honey and fresh raspberries, with toasted oatmeal soaked overnight in a little bit of whisky. Atholl brose is a drink using similar ingredients but does not contain raspberries. Earlier recipes used crowdie cheese rather than (or as well as) cream and were sometimes called cream-crowdie. Other earlier recipes are more austere, omitting the whisky and treating the fruit as an optional extra.

A traditional way to serve cranachan is to bring dishes of each ingredient to the table so that each person can assemble their dessert to taste. Tall dessert glasses are also of typical presentation.

It was originally a summer dish and often consumed around harvest time but is now more likely to be served all year round and on special occasions. A variant dish was ale-crowdie, consisting of ale, treacle, and whisky with the oatmeal – served at a wedding with a ring in the mixture: whoever got the ring would be the next to marry.

Chicken Parmo

Parmo is a dish originating in Middlesbrough, England. It typically consists of fried breaded chicken topped with a white béchamel sauce and cheese. Parmo originated as escalope Parmesan, a derivative of chicken parmigiana.


Rumbledethumps is a traditional dish from the Scottish Borders. The main ingredients are potato, cabbage and onion. Similar to Irish colcannon, and English bubble and squeak, it is either served as an accompaniment to a main dish or as a main dish itself.

Cooked leftovers from a roast meal can be used. However, to make fresh rumbledethumps one needs to lightly sauté the shredded onion and cabbage in butter until the onion is translucent and the cabbage wilted, then add some potatoes mashed with butter, salt and pepper; after thoroughly mixing the ingredients, they are placed into an oven proof dish, and cheddar (or similar) cheese placed on top, if desired. This is then baked until golden brown on top.

Saffron Bun

Still known as ‘Tea Treat Buns’ in their home of West Cornwall, saffron buns are best eaten warm, or toasted with butter and jam. Actually, they’re best eaten full stop.

A saffron bun, Cornish tea treat bun or revel bun, Swedish lussebulle or lussekatt, Norwegian lussekatt, is a rich, spiced yeast-leavened sweet bun that is flavoured with saffron and cinnamon or nutmeg and contains currants similar to a teacake. The main ingredients are plain flour, butter, yeast, caster sugar, currants and sultanas. Larger versions baked in a loaf tin are known as saffron cake.

Sussex Pond Pudding

An entire lemon, hiding in a pastry shell, covered in butter and sugar – the Sussex pond pudding is a thing of beauty.

The first recorded recipe for the Sussex pond pudding was in Hannah Woolley’s The Queen-Like Closet (1672). Woolley suggests encasing a whole apple.

In her A History of English Food, Clarissa Dickson Wright describes the pudding as requiring "considerable flair to make", as the cook needs to scratch the lemon "so that its flavours burst out while it is being cooked." She notes also that the Sussex shopkeeper Thomas Turner recorded in his diary of the 1750s and 1760s that he ate variants such as currant pond pudding and plum suet pudding.

Can you name anymore?

Posted by brizzle born and bred on 2016-07-07 08:42:06

Tagged: , British foods with strange names , misunderstood British Foods , Toad in the hole , Bubble and squeak , Spotted dick , Welsh rarebit/rabbit , Cullen skink , Stargazey pie , Singing hinnies , Angels on horseback , Jam roly poly , Love in disguise , Haggis , Black Pudding , Periwinkles , Laver bread , Faggots , Scotch Eggs , Jellied Eels , Mushy Peas , Yarg , Stottie Cakes , Scouse , Hevva Cake , Black Bun , Soor Plooms , Berwick Cockles , Lucky Tatties , Ecclefechan Tart , Bedfordshire Clanger , Cranachan , Chicken Parmo , Rumbledethumps , Saffron Bun , Sussex Pond Pudding , Lancashire-hotpot

Grilled Ginger-Sesame Chicken Salad with Peanut Dressing

Grilled Ginger-Sesame Chicken Salad with Peanut Dressing

Grilled Ginger-Sesame Chicken Salad with Peanut Dressing

Salad recipe at:…

Posted by gfacegrace on 2016-01-23 20:36:06

Tagged: , cook , cooking , joy of cooking , food , food lovers , cooking lovers , love cooking , foodgasm , food porn , food coma , food ideas , food inspiration , food styling , food photography , macro food , close up food , yummy , delicious , fresh , dinner , meal , easy meals , recipe , dinner recipe , dinner ideas , meal ideas , meal inspiration , dinner inspiration , home cooking , beautiful , beautiful food , salad , color , colour , colorful , purple , orange , chicken , chicken salad , recipes , chicken salad recipe , Asian , Asian food , cabbage , claw , Asian chicken salad. Asian salad. sesame , ginger , sesame ginger chicken salad , sesame chicken , sesame chicken salad , grilled , BBQ , summer , summer food , easy salad , vegetables , crunch , peanut , peanut sauce , chicken salad peanut dressing , dressing , peanut dressing

How to cook a sirloin steak on the grill and oven

How to cook a sirloin steak on the grill and oven

Let’s take a look at our Top Sirloin. This is a USDA Prime Top Sirloin steak which means it comes from the top 2% of beef in the U.S. We also offer an upper 1/3 USDA Choice line of steaks, which are steaks that just missed the USDA Prime grade, but don’t have the ticket price attached with USDA Prime. Today we are going to be cooking a USDA Prime Wet Aged Top steak. You may be asking: What is a wet-aged steak? That is a great question and I encourage you to watch our distinction video where I talk about that in more detail. In short, aging is a process that makes a steak more flavorful, juicy and delicious.

There are two methods of aging: wet aging and dry aging. We offer both. You’ve received our steaks, they came frozen to you; make sure you place them in a refrigerator for 24 hours to give them a chance to thaw out overnight. We have done so and as you can see here, we have 2 Top Sirloins. One that I have taken out already and the other one that is still in the bag. It’s crucial that you take these steaks out 30 minutes before you are planning on cooking them to give them an opportunity to bloom and to make sure that your steak is at room temperature so that when we place them on the grill the steak will cook evenly all the way through.

Your steaks have been out now for 30 minutes. What we need to do next is to make sure that we are generously seasoning the steak with our Chicago Steak seasoning that will give it this flavor and crustiness that we are looking for. The other reason that we are seasoning this steak now and then wait 5 minutes is to make sure that the flavor profile of the seasoning penetrates all the way through the beef which is very important. You never want to put seasoning on a steak and place it on the grill as the salt will draw out all the moisture and dry out your steaks. Let’s be generous and put some seasonings on these Top Sirloins.

Now, we’ll wait 5 minutes. While we’re waiting and making sure that our seasoning is penetrating through the beef we will make sure that we oil our grill grate. All we want to do is take a little bit of vegetable oil and just slightly brush it on the grill. That will make sure that your top sirloin never ever sticks to your grill which is key to an excellent steak. Let’s put this Top Sirloin steak on this grill and let’s cook it perfectly. A minute on both sides; great crust, great crisp. Let’s get it on. One minute and we’ll flip. It’s been a minute and half, both sides are done; let’s put into our pre-heated oven. It’s been five minutes, let’s take these steaks out.

If you take a look at the steaks you can see how nice, plump and juicy it is. What we want to make sure is that for the next 3 minutes we are going to leave the steaks to sit and rest so that the juices reabsorb. It’s been 3 minutes, our Top Sirloins have had a chance to rest, now let’s slice into it. Oh my goodness, look at this steak! It’s absolutely, perfectly done. A nice medium. You know what I have to do- I have to steal a little piece to make sure it’s good! The nice beefy flavor, the chew is absolutely incredible. Top Sirloin steak grilled to perfection just the way you are going to enjoy it.

As always, don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube and stay tuned for the Ultimate Steak Experience right here on Steak University TV!

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Posted by nayeem_ict on 2015-12-25 06:47:09

Tagged: , sirloin steak , steak , food , cooking , sirloin steak recipe , sirloin steak grill , sirloin steak calories , how to cook sirloin steak in oven , how to cook sirloin steak on grill , how to cook sirloin steak tips , sirloin , beef sirloin recipe , top sirloin recipe , pork sirloin recipe , sirloin recipe oven , sirloin recipes , sirloin recipe ideas

Chakula, or Swahili for Food

Chakula, or Swahili for Food

The best part of exploring a new culture is learning about the food. What people eat and how they make it consumes me. Prior to leaving Portland, more than a few people asked, "What kind of food do they eat?" I had some assumptions, for sure, (heavy on the starches and meat), but I had no idea what to really expect. I was certainly looking forward to finding out. 
Well, I was not disappointed on so many levels. My photos often consist of the foods I’ve enjoyed eating and making. From our first days in Riruta, Melissa and I enjoyed making sukumo wiki (kale, literally translated "push the week") and maharagwe and wali (beans and rice). My favorite (pictured here) is Nyama Choma, oh how I love thee, or Grilled Meat and chapati (a delicious flat bread). 
As we’ve traveled, learning to make these dishes with host sisters and mothers has helped break the language barrier and develop a bond across cultural differences. In Pembe, my sister taught me how to make Zanzibar-style Pilau. While in Maasai country, I helped my sister make Maasai chai, chapati and uji (porridge). Maggie, our amazing guide and dear friend, taught us to make chapati, goat pilau and chips mayai (a french fry omelettle that should be illegal it’s so good!). Beyond new recipes, what I learned is there is nothing to seal a friendship like cooking together over a hot stove. Language barriers be damned! 

Posted by MindaBeth on 2012-09-28 08:42:38


Day 186 – grilling to please

Day 186 - grilling to please

My sister and I were put in charge of grilling food for supper. We had this crazy idea that we wanted to grill up some fruit. I found a great recipe for a glaze for pineapple that turned out great. I also realized that grilling uses a lot fewer dishes than regular cooking. A lazy person like me takes note of things like that.

Day 186 of 365

Posted by Swhise on 2008-06-24 01:18:11

Tagged: , project365 , california , food

Grilled Vegetable Skewers with Charmoula Sauce

Grilled Vegetable Skewers with Charmoula Sauce

The weather here has been fantastic the past few days so Colleen suggested we grill out. We found this recipe in "1000 Vegan Recipes" and the results speak for themselves: delicious! It was a perfect way to cap a long weekend.

Charmoula is apparently a fragrant Moroccan sauce. We used all parsley instead of half parsley, half cilantro for the sauce and added tofu for some protein. The onions were also our idea.

Posted by Bacon And Tofu on 2011-01-18 03:06:56


A for effort!

A for effort!

We’ll see what the judges say about the taste…

Anyway, now these puppies (piggies?) will sit in the fridge for 4 hours or so (should be longer, overnight even), then I’ll put them on the barbie at the lowest heat to cook for a couple of hours (no idea here…). At the end, I think I have to cut them up a bit, cover them with barbeque sauce, then throw them on the grill for a bit. Serve hot I’m guessing.

Posted by George on 2006-08-20 18:31:38

Tagged: , zonetag , cameraphone , recipe , making ribs , ribs , cooking

The Way To Cook Currently Crunch

The Way To Cook Currently Crunch

There are actually several alternative methods cooking seeing as there are people doing the cooking. Cooking can be a personal thing. Though some might be approached with little skill by any means, others are often more involved. This article is jam-full of information that can be important to the most experienced of cooks.

It is quite crucial that you ready your ingredients before starting cooking your meal for the group. Take an inventory to ensure that everything that you will want is offered. The time just before the big event, get everything all set. Be sure to supply the utensils and cookware you need. The process permits you to pinpoint the cooking itself.

As you may season meat, you should attempt a cooking a little bit piece first. Certain meats, for example meatballs, hamburgers, and meatloaf, should be carefully seasoned for these people to taste great. Avoid cooking everything after it’s been seasoned. Section off a compact bit and cook it. Whether it tastes good, then cook it, whether it needs some additional seasoning, then you can definitely adjust your recipe prior to the full meal.

When cooking for an individual you want to thrill it is very important be sure that you are preparing dinner that you may have prepared before and know you may prepare well. Cooking a fresh recipe can be a bad idea given that you have not really determined any quirks from the recipe. This really is a recipe for the stressful time with the cooking.

While you are grilling burgers, they sometimes lose their shape after they adhere to your grill and grow challenging to remove. Try brushing vegetable oil about the cooking surface ahead of cooking to ensure food is not going to stick.

Complete many steps when cooking something before hand. Try looking at recipes to see what you can do upfront without spoiling. A great deal of prep work might be completed the time before cooking. This causes it to become even quicker to cook complicated dishes and then make them more pleasant.

Usually, meals which are not around par is the effect of changing a straightforward recipe into some thing difficult. Simple recipes and methods can yield very impressive results. When you keep to the ideas here, you will have a greater idea of not simply cooking, but baking and serving on the whole.

Posted by narenshastri on 2014-02-01 07:08:39

Tagged: , kitchen , hands , temp , chef , agency

Being Healthy Ought Not To Be A Chore

Being Healthy Ought Not To Be A Chore

You can’t ignore nutrition. It’s connected to individuals spanning various ages and backgrounds. We can easily opt to eat nutritiously, or perhaps not. When you try these tips, you will recognize that there may be more to following nutritional guidelines than fixing meals water and salad.

In order to ensure proper nutrition, make it a habit to take a multivitamin daily. Although it is better to get nutritional supplements from actual food, taking a daily multivitamin helps fill in the gaps.

If your recipe allows for the selection of nut, choose almonds. They are high in nutrition, low in cholesterol and they maintain blood cell healthy while boosting protein levels. In addition, they are typically less than most other nuts.

Salmon is an excellent food for you personally with lots of healthy benefits. Salmon is rich in omega-3 essential fatty acids and possesses a great deal of niacin. This stuff will lower your perils of developing certain kinds of cancer, heart diseases as well as other health problems. Choosing wild salmon instead of farmed salmon will lower your exposure to toxic chemicals.

Sugar should be controlled to be able to live a good life. This is a misconception to the majority of individuals who consuming fruit juices act as good substitutes for soda. This could be a misconception because so many fruit juices have higher amounts of sugar then your sodas. It is usually a smart idea to know all the ingredients in the foods and beverages we ingest.

Beef is rich in fat, so using turkey breast that is ground up can be a healthier alternative. This reduced calories and also can help you not eat just as much saturated fat. Pick ground turkey breasts since dark meat is a lot like ground beef when it comes to nutrition. Certain ground turkey blends include dark meat and breast meat, and for that reason the saturated fat content articles are still a lttle bit high.

The best ways to cook meat from the nutritional standpoint are baking, broiling, grilling, and roasting. Use cooking spray instead of butter when cooking your meals. If your meal requires browned beef, make sure to strain the juice from it, then rinse the beef with warm water. This minimizes unwanted fat you are going to consume when eating the beef.

Proper nutrition isn’t about depriving yourself. Good nutrition will not involve deprivation. Instead, it relates to consuming more nutritious foods and keeping the less nutritious foods as low as possible. You should apply the various tips you simply read and start making small changes to your diet.

Posted by roncarmichael202 on 2014-06-15 07:05:56

Tagged: , swallow , nests , swiftlet , nest , bird , soup