A recipe for Chinese-inspired five spice tofu, marinated in a mixture of soy sauce, sesame oil and Chinese five spice, and baked in the oven. This Chinese five spice tofu is perfect for adding into vegetable stir-fries, Chinese-style salads, any kind of noodle dish, or just for a quick Asian flavored snack.
Chinese five spice is a unique blend of fennel, star anise, cinnamon, pepper and cloves, but don't be fooled by those familiar ingredients - Chinese five spice packs a uniquely flavorful and pungent punch. It's a taste that certainly isn't for everyone. If you've never tried it before, or, if you have "undeveloped" Western taste-buds, you may want to cut the amount of five-spice required in half, or try a milder recipe for vegetarian Chinese food or try another kind of baked tofu. If, however, you want a genuine taste of Chinese cuisine (or just want to try something new) in a vegetarian and vegan tofu recipe, try this recipe for Chinese five spice tofu.
This simple baked tofu recipe is both vegetarian and vegan, and, if you need it to be gluten-free, swap out the soy sauce for a gluten-free substitute, such as nama shoyu or tamari, and check the ingredients on your vegetable broth to make sure it's gluten-free as well.
First, prepare your tofu. Like most vegetarian and vegan tofu recipes, this one will taste best if you press the tofu first. Why? Tofu is like a sponge - the more water you gently press out of it, the more of the delicious five-spice marinade it can soak up! Not sure how to press tofu? See this easy step-by-step guide here: How to press tofu.
Once your tofu is well pressed, pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
Slice your well-pressed tofu into 1/2 inch long strips (or you can cut them in to another shape, if you prefer). Lightly grease a baking pan and arrange the prepared tofu in a single layer in the pan.
In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining ingredients and pour over the tofu slices. If you have time, you can also marinate the tofu slices in the soy sauce and Chinese five-spice mixture for a few hours or up to overnight.
Bake your tofu for 15 minutes in the pre-heated oven, then turn each individual tofu piece over, and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, or until liquid has been absorbed.
Enjoy your vegetarian and vegan five-spice baked tofu!