Tamari Tofu with Raw Spiral Salad

November 06, 2014

Tamari Tofu with Raw Spiral Salad

Every now and then I go through ‘tofu phases’ where I eat tofu twice, thrice or sometimes four times a week.  When this happens, I absolutely love eating pan fried Tamari Tofu.  It is so delicious.  It is crispy on the outside and the saltiness of the tamari works beautifully with sesame oil and fresh lime juice.

I know a lot of people don’t like eating tofu. I commonly hear, “It doesn’t really taste like anything” or “I don’t know what to do with it”.  The funny thing is, tofu is so easy to cook!  It doesn’t need to be marinated for a long time, if at all, and I find it doesn’t have the same propensity to dry out like meat does.  You can cook tofu until you get that beautiful crispy crust on the outside without being fearful of taking it past medium rare like a steak.

I will say this about tofu. For me, it’s important to buy good quality tofu.  This means organic tofu that is free from genetic modification (GM free). Tofu of this type is becoming so much more readily available. I can now purchase organic GM free tofu from my local supermarket for a really good price.  Of course, different varieties are available at health food stores, normally at a higher cost. The best tofu I have ever seen is available at a stall in Brisbane’s Northey Street Organic Farmers Markets on Sunday mornings. They hand make their tofu and you can talk to them about how it’s done and what ingredients they have used.  I think that’s pretty amazing.

So, getting back to the recipe… I love my Tamari Tofu served with a crispy salad that is bursting with the flavour of citrus – both lemon and lime work well.  Toss in some toasted cashews and sesame seeds and you’ve got a simple, delicious and healthy plant-based meal. I use a really mild organic sesame oil in this recipe by Melrose.  It is not strong like some other sesame oils, so provides just the right balance of flavour. And remember, if you don’t have a spiraliser you can use a grater or make up any salad you like. Throw in whatever ingredients you have in your fridge.

Tamari Tofu with Raw Spiral Salad

Serves 2


  • 250g organic GMO free firm tofu
  • 2 tablespoons organic tamari
  • 1 tablespoon organic sesame oil + 2 teaspoons extra for the dressing
  • 1 lime, halved
  • 1 zucchini
  • 2 carrots, peeled
  • 1 small beetroot, peeled
  • Small handful of raw cashews
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • Pinch of Himalayan salt
  • Creamy Cashew Dressing to serve if desired
  • Spiraliser


  1. Cut your tofu into four pieces – cut the tofu down the middle and then cut each half down the width to reduce the thickness of the pieces. Place the tofu in a bowl or on a plate. Mix the tamari and 1 tablespoon of the sesame oil together in a small bowl or cup with a fork to make a marinade. Pour the marinade over the tofu and let this marinate for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Using a spiraliser, make vegetable noodles with the zucchini, carrots and beetroot.  Place the vegetable noodles in a mixing bowl. Set aside.
  3. Heat a medium to large pan on medium heat.  Add your cashews and sesame seeds to the pan and toast for 5 minutes, or until slightly golden. Set aside to cool.
  4. In the same pan, fry the tofu on a medium-high heat.  Place the tofu pieces directly into the pan (you don’t need to add any extra oil) and then drizzle the remaining marinade over the top.  Fry the tofu until the bottom side is golden brown – this will probably take about 5 minutes.  Turn the tofu pieces with tongs and fry on the other side until it is also golden brown and the outside of the tofu is crispy to touch.  At the last minute, get half of a lime and squeeze the juice onto the tofu pieces into the pan.  You will hear a nice sizzle.  Toss the tofu carefully in the lime juice for 1 minute. It may start to caramelise a little.  Remove the tofu from the pan.
  5. Dress the salad.  Add 2 teaspoons of sesame oil, squeeze the juice of a quarter of a lime and add a pinch of Himalayan salt.  Add the cooled cashews and sesame seeds. Stir the salad well with your hands or tongs to coat the vegetable spirals with the sesame oil and lime juice.
  6. Place the salad on two plates.  Place two pieces of tofu on each plate on top of the salad. Serve with a little sliver of extra lime. You can also serve this dish with some Creamy Cashew Dressing drizzled on the top.

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