Make tofu at home
Here we explain how to make tofu at home. Tofu is made by coagulating soymilk with salts such as calcium sulphate or magnesium chloride. In Japan they use nigari, which is basically magnesium chloride with other trace elements. We prefer to make tofu with calcium sulphate because it is the cheapest coagulant and adds extra calcium to your diet. Asian people make daily fresh tofu but in Western countries only very few people have ever tried. Home made tofu tastes very fresh and contains no preservatives. When we make tofu we also make our own soy milk, usually with a soy milk maker, such as the filterless Soyquick. The only special equipment you need is a tofu mould, which basically is a plastic or stainless steel container with holes.
You can buy a tofu mould from companies that sell automatic soy milk makers, or you can make your own by drilling holes in a plastic container. Here we explain how to make tofu in a few simple steps.
To produce about 400 g of tofu you need 2 liter soy milk
and two teaspoons natural calcium sulphate. Instead of calcium sulphate, you can also use nigari, but whichis more difficult to find. Another reason that I prefer calcium sulphate is that nigari has a slight bitter taste.
Curdling the milk
Boil the soy milk for about 5 minutes and cool down to about 70-80C. If you make soy milk with an automatic soy milk maker you only have to cool down the soy mil a bit, no need to boil it again.
Dissolve two teaspoons natural calcium sulphate in one cup of warm water. Do not leave the coagulant to long in the water, otherwise it will harden. Less coagulant produces softer tofu, more produces harder tofu. Pour the prepared coagulant solution slowly into the hot soya milk, while gently stirring the soya milk and allow the mixture to stand for 15 to 20 min. If there is still some milky area after adding all coagulant solution, mix some more to use. I also tried to add the calcium sulphate powder directly to the hot soy milk and that also worked!
Forming the tofu
Once all soya milk is separated into small white curds of tofu and an amber liquid, transfer this coagulated dispersion into a mould lined with cheese cloth. A small weight is placed on the lid of the container and allowed to sit for about 20 minutes. Empty the resulting block of tofu, which should be firm enough to hold together, into a tub of cold water, store it in the refrigerator and change soaking water daily. When you intend to eat the tofu the same day, or the day after, there is no need to store the tofu in water. To make tofu with extra texture, place it in a sealable container, cover with water and freeze. The tofu will have a more fibrous texture after thawing.