Things You Can Caramelize

What food comes to mind when you think of caramelizing? Let's see... there's onions, shallots, nuts, apples, creme brulee, etc. Have you ever considered tofu?

I know it's a bit odd, but hear me out! Tofu is one of those foods that might require some extra coaxing for folks to try. But perhaps caramelizing them to give them more depth, flavor and color will help you to consider trying this recipe for Caramelized Tofu.

For lunch today we wanted to use up some bok choy and tofu we purchased last week. Thanks to my friend, Elly, she shared the site of 101 Cookbooks with me for a pancake recipe. On the same site, my eyes found this dish. I made some adaptations to use what I had on hand and overall, its a great way to use tofu. It made the tofu both sweet and salty - a great combination for most foods. To pair with this, I served it with steamed vegetable dumplings and a simple homemade ponzu sauce.

Here is my adaption of Caramelized Tofu with Bok Choy:

7 - 8 ounces extra-firm tofu cut into thin 1-inch segments
a couple pinches of fine-grain sea salt
a couple sprays of cooking spray
2 medium cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup green onion, sliced
3-4 baby bok choy , washed and cut into 1/8-inch wide ribbons
salt & pepper to taste
few drops of sesame oil

Cook the tofu strips in large hot skillet (or pot) with a bit of salt and a sprays of cooking spray. Saute until slightly golden, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Stir in sugar. Cook for another couple of minutes.

In the same pan, add a touch more sprays of cooking spray, another pinch of salt, and dial the heat up to medium-high. When the pan is nice and hot stir in the chopped bok choy. Cook for 2 - 3 minutes, stirring a couple times (but not too often) until softened.

Return the tofu to the pan with the bok choy and toss together with salt, pepper and sesame oil before serving.

Serves 2 - 3 as a main, 4 as a side

*I'm also submitting this to the Bookmarked Recipes blogging event, hosted by Ruth of Ruth's Kitchen Experiments. This is a great weekly blogging event so join in the fun or check out the round up every Monday on Ruth's site!*


  1. Ok I totally have to make that - that looks fantastic!

  2. This looks great! Something really new and different (at least for me!) to try.

  3. I'm not the biggest tofu fan (texture thing) but I must say this looks so good. And the dumplings. Ohhh the dumplings. I want them all :)

  4. Whoa, this dish looks totally professional! Beautiful plating! It sounds pretty yummy too! I love anything with bok choy in it. :-)

  5. Thanks for letting us know about the Bookmarked Recipes. I may submit one soon.

  6. That looks amazing, and I LOVE the presentation! I'm totally hooked on 101cookbooks too!

  7. I am always on the lookout for new tofu recipes. I literally make it about 3 times a week for lunches or dinner!

  8. That looks wonderful!! I will so have to try it. Yum!

  9. I've never been brave enough to try tofu but this is looking and sounding good.... you may just have won me over.

    Thanks for sending this into bookmarked recipes!