Happy Herbivore Blog

How to Freeze Tofu

Posted by: Lindsay S. Nixon |

Category: FAQ

Tofu can be hit or miss. Some people don't love the texture but freezing your tofu is a great way to change the texture without much extra effort. Freezing tofu removes the excess water which makes tofu able to soak up your marinade better. It also makes your tofu less 'sponge-y' and gives it a sort of 'chewier' texture.

I take my tofu and cut a slit into the top of the plastic packaging and drain it over the sink. Then, with the tofu still in its package, I place it into the freezer. Let it freeze- this takes several hours, depending on your freezer.

When tofu comes out of the freezer it will turn into an amber color. Don't be alarmed! Some tofu gets only slightly yellow, some gets pretty dark. That's normal and it will fade back to its normal color.

Let your tofu thaw out. I like to leave tofu in the freezer over night and then place it in the fridge in the morning, by dinner it will have thawed out and I can cook with it!

Mushroom Stock

Posted by: Lindsay S. Nixon |

Category: Recipe

When I was at HTLA Chef Eric (from Millenium) told me to save my mushroom stems and make a broth with them. Since I love a good mushroom stock and I also love getting the most out of all my produce -- I just had to try this!

Sadly, I just haven't had any mushroom butts to try give it a go... until now!

Having made a beautiful mushroom gravy for Thanksgiving (Thanksgiving Gravy pg.255 HHC), I had a lot of bottoms leftover and threw them in a pot with 4 cups of water and some chopped onion (also Eric's suggestion).

I brought it to a boil, then simmered for about an hour -- until the onions were practically falling apart.

I drained the stock off then pressed excess liquid out with a bowl.

Tada! Mushroom stock.

I also added a bit of low sodium soy sauce -- but it wasn't necessary and you could use salt or miso.

Now it's time for soup!

Baking Powder and Baking Soda

Posted by: Andrea Dermos |

Category: FAQ

Hi Herbies! It's baking season so we thought we would bring you a few informative posts on baking and answer your questions. Once in awhile people will email in and ask if they can replace baking soda with powder or vice versa. 

Baking soda and baking powder are both leavening agents, meaning they’ll make your baked goods ‘rise.’ Baking powder actually contains some baking soda, but they aren’t used exactly the same way.

Baking soda is sodium bicarbonate. When you bake with baking soda, you usually add some kind of acidic ingredient. Chocolate, agave, soy yogurt, all of these are acids, and they cause the sodium bicarbonate to activate and the bubbles that it forms makes your baked goods rise. If your recipe only calls for baked soda, you’ll want to bake it soon so it comes out nice and fluffy. Baking soda will taste bitter if you use it in a recipe without any acid, which is usually why you find baking soda in cookie recipes that use things like chocolate.

Baking powder is a mixture of sodium bicarbonate, an acid agent, and a dying agent like a starch. Baking powder is activated when it is combined with a liquid. Gases are released when your dough is in the oven after the temperature has increased.

If a recipe calls for both baking powder and baking soda, they’re usually being used for different reasons. The baking powder will be used for leavening, while the baking soda is added to the recipe to neutralize the acids in the ingredients and it can help make your baked goods soft.

You should always whisk your dry ingredients together before adding the wet so that you have an equal distribution of all of your ingredients. You don’t want to create a baked good that has too much baking soda or baking powder in only one part of the batter because they will rise too much. If you bake cookies or a cake that seems to rise and then collapse, you’ve used too much baking powder. The bubbles that form are too big and then they collapse!

If you have any baking questions, feel free to leave them in the comments section or send us an email!