Silken tofu, also known as smooth or soft tofu, is one of the 3 types of natural, unprocessed tofu that you can buy today (the others being firm and dry.) This tofu is unique in the fact that it is incredibly soft compared to everything else on the market. Because its so different from its “tofu brethren” its rarely called for in recipes but if you know how its made and how to use it its a very versatile food choice that can be used as a healthy alternative in place of higher fat dips and creams.
Of all of the natural tofu’s, silken/soft tofu is the only one that is not drained during production and this is exactly what causes it to be so soft and to be the most moist of any of the major tofu varieties. The consistency of silken tofu is very much like butter and it can easily be used for spreading or for deserts. While most types of tofu are fairly substitutable, its important to know that you should only use this particular variety when specifically called for in a recipe as it will generally fall apart if used as a substitute for traditional firm tofu.
There are different types of regional customs employed when making soft tofu and this has resulted in several sub categories of this popular food. Most notably, black bean tofu or “Black douhua” is a type of silken tofu which is made from plain black beans and soybeans. This process results in a darker colored tofu with a slightly different (though very pleasant!) taste.
While you don’t want to eat or serve silken tofu the same way as traditional firm tofu, there are a number of different methods for preparing and eating it. Its most often served as a spread that can be applied to other foods like crackers or even as a dipping sauce for vegetables – this makes it a very healthy alternatives to high fat processed dips like ranch! In addition to being served as a spread, you’ll often find silken tofu served in a small square block with a garnish, or even a sweet sauce poured over the top. Since tofu does such a great job absorbing flavors this can be a very enjoyable meal of paired with something you enjoy,
Silken tofu is generally lower in fat, but also in protein when compared to firm. Here’s a look at the nutritional information:
Tofu Nutritional Breakdown (Soft / Silken Tofu)
Serving Size = 1/2 Cup
Calories = 55
Fat = 3g
Silken tofu is readily available in most specialty or natural grocery stores and is quickly invading traditional supermarkets. There are a number of great recipes out there so don’t be afraid to pick some up the next time your shopping and open up an exciting new world of flavor possibilities!