Introduction: Marbled Tofu
Most people who have eaten tofu have eaten it at least once with that ever-omnipresent condiment, soy sauce. But everyone seems to use soy sauce after the tofu is baked, fried, broiled, etc. What if we coated the tofu in soy sauce before we cooked it? Or, to take an even further step back, what if we put coated the tofu with soy sauce before it was even sliced?
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Step 1: Size the Tofu
The tofu should be as close to 1.5" x 3" x 6" as possible. Many stores, especially higher-end grocery stores such as Whole Foods, sell logs of tofu that can be cut down to this size. Make sure that all sides are cut as flat as possible; you want the tofu to be able to stand unsupported on any of its six faces.
Step 2: Press Tofu
Pressing tofu releases as much water from the tofu as possible. Usually this is done in preparation for a stir-fry, where a moist chunk of tofu leaves the cooked product too soggy. For our needs, we'll be pressing the tofu so that it will get rid of excess liquid, allowing more soy sauce to be absorbed later. You can use a real tofu press if you want, or you can just lay on some weights such as heavy, way-too-expensive architecture books.
Step 3: Soy Sauce
You'll want to empty out soy sauce into a container with a wide opening, such as a plastic cup. Use your favorite brand. Some people enjoy Kikkoman, but I prefer Kroger, because it's cheaper and I'm poor.
Step 4: Injection
Use a syringe to suck up some of the soy sauce. Many grocery stores sell small syringes for applications from delivering medicine to applying frosting. The size of the syringe doesn't matter, as long as the nozzle is small enough that soy sauce won't escape on its own.
With some sauce in the syringe, gently poke a hole on the top side. Put some pressure on the top of the syringe, but not too much! You want to be able to carefully control how fast the soy sauce comes out. Otherwise it will stain the exterior of the tofu and squeeze out the sides. You'll notice that this is happening in the picture above. I did it wrong.
Turn your tofu onto the next side and repeat. Use as many or as few holes in each side as you want. Make note that depending on how much soy sauce you use, there may not be enough in the tofu to notice the stain, or too much to differentiate it from the unstained tofu. A happy medium is what's required.
Step 5: Slice
Once all your soy sauce is absorbed, make some slices into the tofu with (preferably) an X-Acto knife. Try one small and one medium square-shaped hole on each side. This doesn't have to be followed exactly. Just make sure that you don't at any point cut all the way through.
Step 6: Hot Glue
Use hot glue to attach all of the cut pieces together. A solid surface that will not burn, such as foamcore, is a good idea to use. Try to fill in the hot glue to the lowest level of the tofu, as if it is a piece of dockwork sitting on the bay, with the tide lapping up at its base.
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