Vegan Tofu Crunchling (High-Protein Tofu Chips)

June 9, 2020
This is one of those "happy accident" recipes I discovered, when I left some thinly sliced tofu in the oven a little longer than planned. My other half absolutely demolished piece after piece, with gusto—I had inadvertently created the vegan version of a British pub classic snack called "crackling." For those of you who don't know what this is, I won't go into the less-than-delightful details of what the original is: suffice it to say that this is one of those crunchy, savory, moreish (relatively healthy) snacks, that would go well with a nice cold glass of beer or a lovely vegan rosé, on a sunny weekend evening. It even works well in a vegan carbonara, along with some thyme/soy roasted mushrooms and a spoonful of whole grain mustard, or sprinkled with your fave vegan cheese and popped under the grill until it goes all bubbly, toasty golden and divine-smelling!

If you can wait that long, that is—I generally find that this disappears within 15 minutes of making a batch, if my partner is within a 5-mile radius!

For a gluten-free version, you could substitute tamari for the soy sauce.
Tofu crunchling

Vegan Tofu Crunchling (High-Protein Tofu Chips)

Recipe Type: Appetizers
utensils YIELDS 4 servings
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  • 450 g Block of firm (or extra firm) tofu, well pressed
  • As needed Spray oil (any mild-flavored oil works just fine)
  • 1 tbsp Soy sauce (like to use Shoyu or another aged, rich dark soy) or 1 tsp flaked sea salt (more or less to taste)
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Directions

1. Preheat your oven to its maximum temperature.

2. Take your pressed tofu block, and thinly slice it (the thinner the slices, the less cooking time needed, and the crunchier it will be).

3. Line a baking sheet or oven tin (roasting tin, cake tin, whatever you have available) with foil, or baking parchment (foil generally means less cooking time).

4. Spray your lined tin with the oil, as evenly as possible.

5. Arrange your thin slices of tofu around the sheet, and avoid overlaps (you can always use a second tin if needed, or bake in batches). They should be 1 slice deep.

6. Spray the tofu slices with oil—get them all covered.

7. Sprinkle your soy sauce all over, so that each slice has at least a splash of soy on it, or sprinkle your salt evenly all over the tofu (again, try and make sure each piece has a little).

8. Once the oven reaches temperature, pop the tofu in.

9. Keep checking, every 5-7 minutes or so. When the pieces are starting to look golden/brown around the edges, remove the tray and flip them over. (Top tip: I like to rearrange the slices so that the more well done ones are exchanged with the paler less crispy ones, to get a consistent crunch.)

10. Once the second side is nice and golden brown, and the pieces are pretty hard (it should also be smelling pretty toasty by now), take out the tray, and move the slices onto a wire rack, or plate lined with kitchen roll.

11. Let your crunchling cool (if you can wait that long), and enjoy!

Also by Ema: Authentic, Customizable Vegan Dhal (Heirloom Recipe)

Vegan Bechamel Sauce (Classic French Cream Sauce)

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Photo: Ema Melanaphy


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Ema Melanaphy is an ex-Civil Servant Reiki practitioner and Shiatsu student, a super proud auntie of 6 niblings, a multipotentialite, passionate vegan, yoga enthusiast and unabashed geek girl. She loves inventing new recipes and veganising the heck out of everything, experimenting with hair colours, learning languages (learning in general!) exploring the world, evolving, and connecting with nature. She posts on Instagram at @reikiema, and blogs on her website www.reikiema.com.

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