Holiday Yuba Roast
Source: Linda Tay Esposito, Flavor Explosions
Here’s a recipe to make your own Yuba Roast. You can pretty much use any combination of herbs you like, but this recipe is for the holiday table. Serve this dish with all of your favorite holiday sides. In traditional vegetarian Buddhist cuisine, quite often mock meats are made with tofu skin, so once you get this technique down pat, you can use it for any season!
Serves 6-8 (makes one glorious 2.5 lbs loaf)
6 packs 5 oz. Hodo Yuba Sheets (alternatively, swap 2 packs of yuba for 1 block of Hodo Firm Tofu for a different texture)
½ gallon water, enough to cover yuba by ½ inch
3 tablespoon fresh thyme, full sprigs
3 tablespoon fresh rosemary, full sprigs
5 bay leaves
2 tablespoons shiitake powder
2 tablespoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons black pepper, freshly cracked
3 tablespoons gluten-free tamari
3 tablespoons blackstrap molasses
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1 tablespoon kosher salt
Rough cut yuba into 1/2 inch ribbons.
Make a broth with the rest of the ingredients. Add yuba and top with enough water to cover yuba. Taste broth. The broth should be very salty as the yuba does not absorb too much of the salt. Simmer 45 minutes.
Drain thoroughly. Squeeze very dry. Remove bay leaves, rosemary and thyme stems. Wrap with cheesecloth while yuba is still hot (if you are substituting firm tofu, have tofu pre-crumbled on the side and at this stage mix into hot cooked yuba, then place everything in cheesecloth), twist and tie very tightly into a ball. Tie the cloth closed at one end with kitchen twine (or cotton cord), then proceed to squeeze out any remaining liquid, then eventually tie a crisscross to expel even more water and create a tight ball; this is very important for keeping the yuba fully formed. (Click here and here for tying visuals.) The packet should feel as firm as a flexed bicep!
Steam loaf for 45 minutes. Let sit in the refrigerator overnight. Unwrap. (Hint: spray cheesecloth with water so the cheesecloth lifts off the surface without breaking the “skin.”) It’s up to you if you want re-steam to heat (preferable) or brushed with oil and heated in the oven to an internal temperature of 165°F.
Photo by Albert Law; styling by Henry Hsu, Hodo.