In most meat grillery, the trick is to cook the meat without losing its precious juices. When grilling tofu, it’s the opposite. You want to get rid of the excess liquid in the tofu to firm up its texture. So we cook it twice: first in a sauté pan and then on the grill. Double-cooking concentrates the tofu’s texture, giving you a bit more to chew on. Try it—it’s worth the tiny bit of extra effort. We also marinate and glaze the tofu for flavor.
Prep: 5 minutes (plus 5 minutes for glaze)
Press: 30 minutes
Marinate: 2 hours
Grill: 8 to 12 minutes.
BBQ TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT
- Long-handled spatula
- Long-handled basting brush.
- For information on types of tofu, see “What is Tofu?”, facing page.
Gas: Direct heat, medium-high (400° to 450°F)
Clean, oiled grate
Direct heat, light ash
12-by-12-inch charcoal bed (about 3 dozen coals)
Clean, oiled grate on lowest setting
Direct heat, light ash
12-by-12-inch bed, 3 to 4 inches deep
Clean, oiled grate set 2 inches above the fire.
INGREDIENTS (MAKES 4 SERVINGS)
2 pounds extra-firm tofu
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 scallion, sliced
½ cup Ginger-Hoisin Balsamic Glaze
½ teaspoon sesame seeds (optional)
Oil for coating grill grate.
1. Cut each 1-pound block of tofu in half through the side to make 2 thick slabs (for a total of 4 slabs). Press the slabs under a heavy weight for 30 minutes.
2. Heat 1 tablespoon of the vegetable oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Add the pressed tofu and cook until golden brown on both sides, about 5 minutes per side, turning once. Combine the tamari, rice vinegar, sesame oil, garlic, and half of the scallion in a large zipper-lock bag. Let the tofu cool slightly, then add it to the bag. Let the tofu cool further with the bag open. When it approaches room temperature, press out the air and seal the bag. Gently massage the marinade into the tofu, then refrigerate for 2 hours or up to 2 days.
3. Heat the grill as directed.
4. Let the tofu rest at room temperature before grilling, about 30 minutes. Remove from the marinade and discard the marinade. Rub with the remaining 1 tablespoon vegetable oil.
5. Brush the grill grate and coat it with oil. Put the tofu on the grill and cook until nicely grill-marked, 4 to 6 minutes per side, brushing both sides with the glaze.
6. Cut each slab on the diagonal into 2 triangles per serving. Sprinkle with the reserved scallion and the sesame seeds (if using) and serve.