I dont remember liking feta that much as a child; a little too salty, a little too tangy. But a few years ago when I set out to make a vegan tofu-feta my mind was changed. This stuff is addicting, and good luck not shoveling it in your mouth as soon as its prepared. Thats what I do, no shame.
If you eat dairy, you should try this recipe just because. You might find that you enjoy it more than the real deal (a stretch? Im going there). This recipe is so good you will always want it around. Not to mention it’s quick and once you have all the ingredients they will last you for quite a few batches!
For the tofu
- one block extra firm tofu, pressed
If you don’t have a tofu press (I don’t) you can use the book/anything heavy method. You sandwich your block of tofu between two plates, using a smaller plate on the top and a larger plate with a lip on the bottom.
You will get a lot of liquid out of the tofu so the a plate with a lip is a good to ensure it doesn’t overflow or spill when you walk with it. Then, stack books or anything heavy on top of the small plate and leave for at least a half hour. The longer you leave it the more liquid that will come out. I left mine for a half hour but should’ve left it longer or piled more stuff on top. There was still a little too much water in it. If you want, you can by already pressed tofu at Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods. I like Wildwood’s tofu best!
An ingredient your going to want to find for this recipe is the ume plum vinegar. Touted for its many medicinal qualities in Japan, umeboshi (the pickled plums) can be pretty expensive. At whole foods its nearly 20 dollars for a small box of them. You can definitely find them at asian markets but many of those varieties have MSG or sugar added. If you do find some affordable ume plums, get them! They are great with a little rice or mixed into sauces.
This is from Wikipedia
This Japanese style traditional pickle is considered good for digestion, prevention of nausea, and for systemic toxicity, including hangovers. Green ume extract is even used as a tonic in Japan. The citric acid is claimed to act as an antibacterial, help to increase saliva production and assist in the digestion of rice. Additionally, umeboshi is claimed to combat fatigue (historically given as part of a samurai’s field ration) and protect against aging.
While the plums might be expensive, the vinegar is not. I think I paid 3 or 4 bucks. Its the tastiest vinegar ever. Tart and salty, which I love because then I dont have to add extra salt. It’s the liquid from the fermentation process so I like to imagine theres something good there for you as well. If you see it, pick it up. You’ll want to put it on everything, and it’s what makes this tofu feta delicious.
For the marinade
- 1 T. ume plum vinegar
- 2 T. olive oil
- 1/4 t. chili flake (optional)
- 1 t. oregano
- 1/4 t. black pepper
- 1/4 t. trader joes 21 seasoning solute
In a small bowl, mix all of the ingredients for the marinade. After your tofu has been pressed, use your fingers to crumble it into a bowl. If you prefer, you can just cut it into small cubes, but I like crumbles. Next, pour the marinade over the tofu and stir until all of the tofu is covered. Transfer to a tupperware or jar to keep.