The Tofu Rant

Ok, I have a little something to admit. I like tofu. Not just a little bit. A lot. I have always been open to the idea of bypassing meat. I am not so keen on the killing of animals, but even more so I think the harvesting of the rainforest to house cattle just so I can have my damn 59 cent steroid enhanced patty down at McConsumer's (TM) is wrong.

So slowly, my wife and I began eating tofu. Not the plain white cube type that you see floating in your miso soup down at the sushi bar, but in a wide variety of products. Turns out I eat tofu at least once a day without knowing it.

People always laugh and make some sort of crack about the taste or what a wussy I am for eating tofu. (I oppose war, maybe you should call me a wussy for that one to while you are at it.) But people most of the time get pissed about my non-chalant attitude about not having red meat. Don't get me wrong, I haven't gone vegetarian. I will have my share of the chicken, the fish (yum) and by-products, milk, chocolate and such. Maybe one day I will take the plunge but for now I will stick with the way things are.

Tofu is made through a process much like cheese is. I would have to compare tofu to potatoes. Have you ever had a plain potato? They don't taste like much until you turn them into French fries, hash browns, add sour cream and chives or anything else. Tofu, made from soy curd, takes on the flavor of whatever you throw on it. Taco seasoning, teriyaki, pepper or anything else greatly changes the flavor. Saying you like tofu is like saying you like using flour when baking. It can do just about anything.

Some of the things I find myself eating these days:

  • A tofu based monterey jack cheese,
  • the weirdest little product ever called "Chickenless Nuggets"
  • soy corn dogs
  • vegetarian chili (with ground "meat", still soy based)
  • a great ice cream sandwich called "Tofuti" it comes in chocolate and vanilla
  • vegetarian pepperoni, great on English muffin pizzas
  • BBQ Wings, a burrito from 360 Degree Burrito called the TBM (Tofu, Broccoli, and Mushroom), this one is what I crave the minute I get back from somewhere out of state. And many more products.
  • ground "tofu" tacos
Most of these items can be found at Trader Joe's.

Food is fuel. That is what all the major diet gurus say anyway. If you don't believe them, try going on an bender one night in the pub. What you eat does matter to your body. Your body is very sensitive. You think it doesn't know the difference between sticking something in your body more closely associated to soybeans than dead carcass?

There is just something nice about tofu. I don't miss red meat, I will tell you that. I never feel all bloated and sluggish after eating something made of tofu. I also am not pushing this on anyone but if you do want to learn more check out Absolutely Tofu or buy "The Book of Tofu". I haven't read all the way through mine yet but all us tofu goobers have to buy one so watch out.

I am not a freak. Yes, I am Californian to the core now. Yes, I do live closer to Berkeley than I did growing up. Yes, I still shower on a semi-regular basis (even though I do work at home). All I can speak from is my own experience. I did something healthy and I feel pretty good about it. I guess if I said I was only going to eat Yak meat from now on I could expect the same level of questioning and weird looks. Take a closer look at what you eat and ask your self if it matters to you. If it does take a stab at the soybean. Plus you won't feel bad looking at a field of them grazing along the highway.

Comments

bradsucks said…
I give tofu a shot every time I wind up in a vegetarian restaurant but I haven't found anything that I really like.

Your comparison to potatoes is interesting though and I think I'll keep that in mind, maybe try a few recipes.
Amit said…
Californians are freaks. They don't think so because they are surrounded by other Californians. ;-)

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