Wednesday, February 11, 2009

REAL tofu making

Today I joined some other women for a "tofu experience". There is a small tofu "factory" near here that you can go to and spend 3 hours or so making a big batch of tofu. It was a far cry from my pathetic attempts - we made 30 blocks of tofu from 4kg of soy beans, compared with my tiny block from my 100g or my medium block from my 300g! But basically the process was the same, just on a much bigger and far more organised scale. As a reminder - the soy beans are soaked over night then put through a processor before being boiled. The mixture is then squeezed through a cloth bag (they had a wonderful machine to make this soooooo easy) then when the resulting soy milk is at about 80 degrees Celsius a salt brine is added and for some reason known only to chemists the soy milk hardens into tofu. It is then put into a mould (or scoop into baskets) and pressed before being cut. We even got to put it in the proper containers and seal them before bringing them home.
It was an interesting morning and I really liked the story about how the tofu factory came about. Basically there used to be an old lady in the community who made tofu and sold it to the locals, but she eventually gave up. The community then tried to convince someone to make it again for them, and in the end the whole community got together, pooled their funds and spent 3 months making huge mistakes until they eventually perfected the making of tofu using local soy beans etc. It is a community effort that is now starting to make some money. Maybe in 20 years from now I will be able to tell the same kind of story about something that happened in our community.....

1 comment:

  1. Wow! That tofu looks amazing! Our apple juice factory has a similar story- the farmers were sick of wasting unsellable apples and pooled together and built it.

    Enjoy your yummy tofu!