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PUT IT ON THE MENU TOFU

Low in fat and a good source of protein, tofu makes an inexpensive meat alternative or silky dessert ingredient

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WE RECENTLY HAD A READER describe tofu as ‘like eating bath sponge’, which just goes to show the bad press it’s had over the years as a niche food that’s second-best to meat. It’s how you cook it that can make or break it in the taste and texture stakes.

Made from soya milk, tofu it’s a good source of iron, protein and calcium, so it’s an important ingredient for vegetarians, vegans and those who avoid dairy. For older women, phytoestrogens in soya, which act like a weak form of oestrogen, can help reduce menopause symptoms. Low in calories and fat, it’s also a handy weight-loss aid, and if you’re looking for ideas for the odd meat-free day, tofu provides lots of options. The mild flavour is a great canvas for marinades, glazes and sauces – or buy it ready-flavoured. Before using, drain, rinse in cold water and pat dry with kitchen paper.

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