This quick and easy carrot-ginger tofu is perfect for weeknight dinners. It’s bursting with flavors and easy to customize. The combination of the sharp ginger and sweet carrots mingles with East Asian flavors and tofu to create a delicious, memorable dish.
for the sauce
- 1 TB sesame oil
- 1 TB finely minced ginger
- 2 TB finely minced garlic
- 1/2 cup mirin
- 3 TB soy sauce
- 1 TB rice vinegar
- 3 TB raw agave syrup
- 1 TB sriracha (optional)
- 1 TB cornstarch, dissolved in 3 TB cold water
for the tofu
- 1 block firm tofu
- 1 TB vegetable or canola oil
- 1 large carrot, sliced on a mandoline slicer
- soba noodles or rice, for serving
- black and white sesame seeds
- Place the sesame oil, minced ginger, and garlic into a small saucepan and soften over low heat for about 5 minutes, or until softened. Do not allow it to brown.
- Add in the rest of the sauce ingredients, except for the cornstarch and water slurry. Allow it to come to a small simmer, then remove from the heat.
- Cut the tofu into 4 thick slabs, then cut each slab in half to make 8 squares.
- Place a large circular non-stick, flat-bottomed pan over medium-high heat. Drizzle the oil into the pan, then fan the tofu around the edges of the pan in a single layer (like the petals on a daisy), leaving the center area open.
- Place a lid over the top and allow the tofu to caramelize for about 10 minutes, undisturbed. It will pop and sputter due to the high heat and moisture in the tofu.
- After the initial 10-minute caramelization is complete, lift the lid straight up carefully (if you tilt the lid, the collected condensation in the lip will drip into the pan, causing more sputtering, so use caution.)
- Carefully flip the tofu (it will pop and sizzle), cover and allow to caramelize on the other side undisturbed for about 3 minutes. Remove the lid again by pulling it straight up.
- By this time, most of the water should be expressed/absorbed, so you can now leave the lid off. Continue to monitor the tofu until the desired level of caramelization is achieved on both sides.
- Add the cornstarch slurry to the saucepan, stir well, then pour it into a pan with the tofu. Keep everything moving around with a rubber spatula to avoid any scorching of the sauce.
- It will thicken after a minute or two. Remove from the heat, then sprinkle with the carrot slices and stir to combine.
- Serve immediately with rice or noodles, and sprinkle with the sesame seeds.
- After adding the cornstarch slurry to the sauce, stir continuously to avoid any lumps and ensure a smooth, thickened glaze.
- To achieve a golden crust on the tofu without sticking, ensure the pan is well-heated and use a sufficient amount of oil. Allow the tofu to sear undisturbed for the best results.
- The sriracha is optional and can be adjusted according to your heat preference. Start with a small amount and add more as needed.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Sautéed, Seared, Simmered
- Cuisine: Asian
Keywords: carrot ginger tofu, asian tofu