Kori-dofu no fukumeni

Kori-dofu no fukumeni

Have you ever tried this unique soybean product called 凍り豆腐 (kori-dofu)? 凍り(kori) means frozen and 豆腐 (dofu) is the same as tofu. This kanji 豆腐 is usually read as “tofu” but in this case, it’s read as “dofu” because of the reason below.

A LITTLE BIT ABOUT JAPANESE LANGUAGE
“凍り (kori) 豆腐 (dofu)” is a compound word consisting of two words “こおり(kori) and とうふ (tofu)”. A voiced mark like this ゛is often added in the upper right corner of the first consonant of the second word of the compound like と (to) → ど (do) making it easier to pronounce and join the two words.

WHAT IS “KORI-DOFU”?

Kori-dofu isn’t frozen tofu. My dictionary says it’s “freeze-dried soybean curd”. Thick made tofu is frozen, squeezed and dried. This process is repeated several times.
You can watch the process of making kori-dofu on the Youtube video below if you are interested.

As a result, the tofu can be preserved for a long time and the nutrients are condensed. So kori-dofu is well known as a nutritionally rich food. It especially contains a lot of soy protein, calcium, and magnesium.

As the video said, kori-dofu is also called different names in some regions. The most common name is 高野豆腐 (koya-dofu). It’s said, monks in 高野山 (koyasan) in Wakayama prefecture accidentally started to make kori-dofu in Kamakura period (1185-1333). Now it’s considered to be a specialty there. The name may be more common than kori-dofu.

I used regular size kori-dofu like the piece on the left hand side in the picture for this recipe. I also have some packed half-size kori-dofu in my pantry.

WHAT DOES “FUKUMENI” MEAN?

含め (fukume) means kind of “including” and 煮 (ni) means “simmering”. 含め煮 (fukumeni) is one of the cooking methods where the ingredients absorb the soup while being simmered. When you bite the food, the soup comes out of it.

DASHI /BROTH

I used Niban-dashi for this dish. If you’re interested in making dashi using natural ingredients, please check the article below. If you have an instant dashi product, prepare the dashi stock following the instructions of the product.

OTOSHI-BUTA

Otoshi-buta also known as “drop lid” is used in this cooking process. If you don’t know that, please check the article below.

OTOSHI-BUTA

Kori-dofu no fukumeni

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Recipe by MikaCourse: side dishCuisine: JapaneseDifficulty: Medium
Servings

4

servings
Prep time

15

minutes
Cooking time

30

minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 kori-dofu (regular size)

  • 400 ml dashi stock (1 and 3/5 US cups)

  • 4 tablespoons sugar

  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions

  • These are the ingredients for this dish.
  • Place the kori-dofu in a tray. Pour warm water (abound 50℃ /122℉) into the try. Soak the kori-dofu for 5 to 15 minutes. (Soaking time is different depending on the product).
  • Hold the kori-dofu with both hands. Wash it in water while gently pressing and releasing it together with both hands “like a sponge”. Remove the kori-dofu from the bowl, and refresh the water. Place the kori-dofu back in the bowel, and continue the same process as before. Repeat until it no longer becomes cloudy. Then press out excess liquid like this picture.
  • After the above processes, the kori-dofu will expand as seen in the picture below.
  • In a medium pot, place dashi stock, sugar, soy sauce, salt and heat them over medium heat. When the sauce becomes hot, carefully add kori-dofu.
    Cover the ingredients with Otoshi-buta. Cook them until the soup has been reduced by a 1/3 of the original amount.
  • After, turn off the heat, set it aside until most of the soup soaks into the kori-dofu.
    Now it’s finished.

Notes

  • For this dish, I cut each kori-dofu into half for the presentation. You can cut it into any size as you like.

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