Yuba goes by many names. Some people call it dried bean curd, others tofu skin. I like yuba. It sounds exotic, or at least more so than tofu. Considered a delicacy in Japan, yuba is not as popular as tofu is in the West. I find this odd, since yuba is awesome. With the consistency of thin noodles, yuba is high in protein and low in fat. It is inexpensive and versatile, making it a budget friendly ingredient to use in soup, stir-fries, or over rice with lots of soy sauce.
I rediscovered this ingredient recently. I remember eating a lot of it in college. My favorite sushi then was Inari, tofu skin wrapped sushi rice. When dipped in soy sauce, everything came together seamlessly. Super simple, super delicious.
When a friend received a months’ worth supply of tofu skins in the mail, he handed me a bag, with a recipe request in exchange. I immediately dug into research and emerged with this recipe: a bolder, more robust deconstructed version of the Inari I loved so much back in the day.
While it is traditional to dip yuba in soy sauce, I wanted to take it a step further by marinating it for several hours. The perfect combination of soy, honey, and ginger permeates the yuba, transforming it something close to sublime, an umami bomb of flavors. Ginger cuts through keeping everything a light and refreshing notes, the honey adds balance, and the vinegar keeps adds enough acid to make this sauce addictive.
When assembling the bowls allow the marinade pour over the rice, soaking every grain with the deliciousness. Make each bite a combination of crunchy vegetables, hearty rice, smooth yuba, and lots of marinade. You’ll love it as much as I do.
Marinated Yuba (Tofu Skins)
Soy ginger Marinade:
- ¼ cup apple or rice vinegar
- ¼ cup tamari (for the GF) or soy sauce
- ½ tsp. grated ginger
- 1 tbsp. agave or honey
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 green onions, thinly sliced
- Tiny splash sesame oil
- 3 oz. yuba (tofu skins)
To make marinade stir together vinegar, soy sauce, and sweetener, with ginger, garlic, and thinly sliced green onion. Add a touch of sesame oil and set aside.
Bring a large pot with water to a boil. Add tofu skin sticks in boiling water. Cook until it becomes soft and pale, about 5-7 minutes. Drain. Place tofu skins in marinade. Let marinade for at least an hour, or overnight. The more the tofu marinated the subtler the ginger taste will be.
- Marinated Yuba (recipe above)
- 4 baby bok choy, steamed
- 1 cup cooked sweet peas
- ¼ cup roasted sunflower seeds
- Handful of chopped cilantro
- Brown cooked brown rice or quinoa (1/2- 1 cup per person)
Steam or sauté bok choy and sweet peas until cooked. To assemble Yuba Bowls place brown rice or quinoa at the bottom of a bowl. Add marinated Yuba, with marinate, over the rice, then add the steamed vegetables and chopped cilantro. Eat immediately.