Soybean-The versatile age-old bean is used for thousands of years in Asia for the immense variety of recipes perfected over years of sampling to make the most exotic and perfected best quality cuisines. If you ever lived or worked in Asia, you know what it means.
In Asia, the Chinese have it for breakfast as soy yogurt with syrup, like tofu remodeled a zillion variety for lunch or dinner. In Indonesia, the Philippines, Myanmar, Malaysia, Vietnam, Laos, Singapore, they make their unique specialties, such as Tahu Goreng, with tamarind sauce or satay sauce. The immensity of incredible variety is just marvelous sumptuous.
However, corporate giants such as Monsanto came along and obliterates its reputation by genetically modifying this precious bean as a cheap source of animal feed. Today, however, there is a growing amount of organic seeds replacing GMO beans, especially for human consumption.
And because of the many health benefits that the organic kind offers, we should not overlook this versatile bean. It is high in protein, high in fiber, a great source of omega fatty acids, antioxidants, and phytoestrogens. It can help in reducing the risk of heart disease and is great in hormone regulation for women, especially those experiencing PMS and the menopausal stage.
Homemade Tofu recipes below are from organic beans to preserve the age-old tradition of making tofu. The photos show the result of what we made of it on the island of Terceira in the Azores. We used seawater instead of nigari as the starter, and Nigari is a product of seawater.
Vinegar or lemon juice works just as well as a starter to make tofu. Follow the recipe below to learn how to make tofu out of organic soybeans from scratch.
Homemade tofu (Soya Panir)
- 2 cups of tofu
- 2 cups of ocean water
- 2 tsp of fresh thyme
- the juice of 1/2 lemon
Soak the soybeans in water overnight, between 6 to 8 hours.
Discard the water and add four fresh cups of water to blend the beans until smooth.
Strain and remove all the milk with a cheesecloth in a colander. You can use the remaining pulp fiber to make cookies etc.
Pour the milk into a pot on medium heat and bring the milk to a boil, always stirring the milk to prevent it from getting burnt at the bottom.
When the milk begins boiling, add the seawater and stir very slowly for the milk to coagulate and cuddle up.
You will have the soy cheese separate from the liquid. When you see the liquid is clear or light brown; it's a good sign, the separation is perfect.
You can add thyme, oregano, or any other herb to make it taste different.
Lift the cheesecloth and squeeze it into a ball and dangle the cloth over a pot to allow the remaining water to drip off.
After a few hours, you can remove tofu from the cheesecloth and slice it into pieces, and grill, cook or make it into a sauce or Tofunaise.
Soak soybean in water overnight, between 6 to 8 hours. Varying the time yields a different quantity of liquid and tofu.