WD50s Wylie Dufresne the Tofu KING shares his winning recipes
Chef Wylie Dufresne is now the tofu king - and he wants to share his winning recipes with YOU.
In classical WD-50 fashion, Dufresne pulled out a few of his many emulsifiers (a strain called A16M and another unappetizingly named gellan gum) to beat back the competition at yesterdays Tofu Around the World Cook-off at the Astor Center in the East Village.
Required to make two dishes one savory, one sweet ol Wylie pulled out the double dose of A16M for whimsical takes on two traditional tofu creations a thickened miso soup with instant tofu noodles and a creamy tofu custard with caramelized bananas and something he calls granola sleeves.
If was enough to hold off chef Erik Battes of Perry St. CafÃ©, Edward Higgins of Insieme and Akinobu Suzuki of Sakagura to take home $5,000 prize along and the bean curd crown.
Here are the recipes Dufresne used to with the competition. Suffice to say they are the test of a skilled and patient cook.
Miso Soup with Instant Tofu Noodles
SERVES FOUR PEOPLE
INSTANT TOFU NOODLES
340 grams firm House brand tofu
150 grams water
*6.1 grams methyl cellulose (Type A16M)
Toasted sesame oil
Bring water to a boil and shear in A16M and blend with tofu. Season with salt and sesame oil to taste and chill to 55 degrees. Once cool, place the mixture into a piping bag and use to fill individual squeeze bottles. Reserve in fridge until needed.
- Pervaiz Shallwani
[MORE AFTER THE JUMP]MISO SOUP
3 liters water
165 grams bonito flakes
55 grams kombu
30 grams red miso paste
Hold water and kombu at 140 degrees for one hour. Remove kombu and raise heat to 176 degrees and add the bonito flakes, turn off heat. Let the flakes soak for ten minutes and strain out the kombu and whisk in the miso paste.
2 scallions, thinly sliced
4 shiitake mushrooms, sliced and lightly sautÃ©ed
Warm four soup bowls and place some shiitake and scallion in each bowl. Ladle 4 ounces of soup into each bowl and serve with one of the tofu mixture squeeze bottles. Direct the diner to squeeze tofu into the soup and stir. Tofu noodles will form instantly.
* Methyl Cellulose forms a gel when heated and melts into liquid when cools. In general, its amount should be 1-1.5% of the rest of the ingredients. Methyl Cellulose can be ordered on www.le-sanctuaire.com.
Warm Tofu Custard with Caramelized Banana and Granola Sleeves
SERVES FOUR PEOPLE
350 grams firm House brand tofu
70 grams sugar
35 grams glucose powder
Blend the above three ingredients together and spread onto acetate sheets 3 by 4 1/2 inches and allow to air dry overnight.
250 grams rolled oats
25 grams orange juice
35 grams brown sugar
12 grams honey
Pinch of salt
125 grams dried banana
Mix all of the above ingredients, except for the dried banana, together in a bowl and spread onto a baking tray. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes and allow to cool. Fold in the dried banana. Using a heat sealer, shape the tofu rectangles into packages and stuff with the granola and seal. Place in 125 degrees oven for six hours until crispy and reserve.
250 grams milk
*5 grams gellan gum (low acyl)
125 grams caramelized sugar
190 grams brown butter
1.5 grams salt
36 grams gelatin, bloomed
Shear gellan into milk and bring to a boil and place in a blender while running. Add the sugar, brown butter, bloomed gelatin, and the salt (in that order). Pour out onto a tray and allow to cool. Once cool, using a ring cutter punch out rounds to fit the bottom of four dessert bowls.
* Gellan gum can be also be ordered on www.le-sanctuaire.com.
170 grams soft House brand tofu
30 grams sugar
75 grams A16 solution*
Blend the above ingredients together and reserve.
200 grams water
1 gram methylcellulose (type A16)
Bring the water to a boil and shear in the A16, cool to 55 degrees.
1 banana, thinly sliced
20 grams sugar
Sprinkle the sugar onto the banana slices and caramelize with a blow torch. Place a caramel disk into four dessert bowls and ladle 4 ounces of the tofu custard into each bowl. Wrap with plastic and bake at 200 degrees for fifteen minutes. Remove the plastic and top with caramelized bananas and place a tofu granola sleeve into each bowl and serve. Direct diners to crush the sleeve onto the custard and enjoy!