Sunday, January 5, 2014

Homemade Tofu Pudding (To-Fu-Fa) with Ginger Syrup 自家製豆腐花


Homemade Tofu Pudding (To-Fu-Fa) with Ginger Syrup 自家製豆腐花

To-Fu-Fa (Tofu Pudding) with Ginger Syrup 豆腐花 is one of my favorite Chinese Style dessert that I've got to order every time I go to Dim-Sum restaurants.  I crave for this dessert from time to time.  When I go for Dim Sum on the weekends with my family, I always make sure this dessert is available so I that I can save some room for it.  It’s a very comforting dessert, smooth and not overly sweet.  The silky softness and melt in the mouth texture always melts me away.  Unfortunately, not many restaurants offer this traditional dessert any more. 


Homemade Tofu Pudding (To-Fu-Fa) with Ginger Syrup 自家製豆腐花

Traditionally, this To-Fu-Fa is made with culinary grade Gypsum Powder (食用石膏粉) to solidify the soy milk.  Since most of us won’t have access to gypsum powder, and I always doubted the safety on the consumption, even when they say "culinary grade"!  So, I tested my recipe with a safer alternative ingredient.  And the secret ingredient is…agar-agar.  Agar-Agar is derived from algae, and the solidify powder releases when it reaches boiling point.  Why did I use agar-agar and not gelatin?   Since agar-agar is a plant base ingredient, verses gelatin is derived from collagen obtained from various animal by-products, using agar-agar in this recipe will be perfect for anyone, including my vegan friends.   


Homemade Tofu Pudding (To-Fu-Fa) with Ginger Syrup 自家製豆腐花

See the picture below?  Yup, this To-Fu-Fa is super soft and barely solidify, that’s the consistency you want to obtain for this dessert.  What’s the secret to do that?  Using the exact amount of Agar-Agar in ratio of the liquid, in this case fresh soy milk.  If you use too much agar, the texture would be too hard and bouncy, not good for this type of dessert.  On the other hand, your dessert won’t form/solidify if you use too little agar.  But I've done the leg work for you and tested out the perfect amount to use so you don’t have to go through eating bouncy To-Fu-Fa.  And you're very welcome!

Homemade Tofu Pudding (To-Fu-Fa) with Ginger Syrup 自家製豆腐花

Since I don’t have the soy milk machine, I took a short-cut and use store bought organic fresh soy milk from the Chinese supermarket, which are widely available these days.  The perfect way to enjoy To-Fu-Fa is drizzle some ginger syrup on top and spoon away.  I can totally skip the dim-sum restaurant and just enjoy this To-Fu-Fa at home!  You can enjoy this dessert chilled or, do what I did.  Put it in the microwave for a minute to warm up.  hm…perfect for a cold winter night.  I hope you like today’s recipe and recipe tips.   Stay tuned for some Chinese New Year (January 31st, 2014) recipes coming out on the blog soon.

Homemade Tofu Pudding (To-Fu-Fa) with Ginger Syrup 自家製豆腐花

1/12/2014 Update:  Since quite a few of you asked about the brand of Agar Agar powder that I used.  Below is a picture of the one that I used.  After looking at it closer, the Chinese translation on the package does say the brand is “Golden Trophy”.  Click here to the link for a similar product that you can get online if you can’t find this in your local supermarkets.


Agar






Homemade Tofu Pudding (To-Fu-Fa) with Ginger Syrup 自家製豆腐花:
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients for the Tofu Pudding:
8 cups (64 oz) organic unsweetened fresh soy milk
1 1/2 teaspoon agar agar powder
6 tablespoons raw sugar (you can add a little more if you prefer a sweeter tofu base)

Ingredients for the Ginger Syrup:
1 cup water
2 inches of fresh ginger root, peeled and thinly sliced
3 ounces of Chinese Cane sugar (片糖)

To prepare the Tofu Pudding:
In a small saucepan, heat 2 cups of soy milk, agar agar, and raw sugar on medium high until it comes to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium low and let it simmer for 5 minutes.  Stirring constantly to make sure all the sugar and agar agar are dissolved completely. 

Place the remaining soy milk in a large mixing bowl.  Place a strainer over the mixing bowl.  Pour the agar agar mixture into the mixing bowl through the strainer to remove any skin formed in the soy milk while heating.  Gently stir to combine.  Evenly divided into small bowls or containers you prefer to use.  Refrigerate until set, at least 2 hours and preferably overnight.

To prepare the ginger syrup:

In a small saucepan, heat the water, the ginger slices and cane sugar on medium high heat until it comes to a boil.  Reduce to a simmer and let it cook for 15 minutes.  This will give enough time for the ginger to infuse the syrup.  Then, remove from heat and let the ginger syrup cool completely.  Remove the ginger slices and store syrup in the refrigerator until ready to use.

To serve, simply pour a little ginger syrup on top of the To-Fu-Fa and enjoy as a chilled dessert.  I sometimes heat the pudding up in the microwaves for a warm version in the winter time.  They are equally good.

43 comments:

  1. Hi Amy , this looks so yummy and delicious , it's a must try , thanks for sharing :)

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  2. I've not had this - looks wonderful! And fun to make, too - always a good thing. Thanks for this.

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  3. this looks great bet the ginger pairs so well with it want to try more Chinese desserts new to me, happy new year

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  4. Have got to try that ginger syrup, sounds incredible!

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  5. Una maravilla que me llevo a mi cocina ahora mismo,abrazos.

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  6. I love this kind of tofu, but usually I buy the one that comes in a box, house brand.
    I will definitely try you recipe Amy...the texture looks perfect.
    Happy New Year and have a great week ahead :D

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  7. Mmmmm....I adore dau fu fa! Thank you!

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  8. I love To-Fu-Fa and it is one of my favorite desserts when we go to dim sum too! Yours looks absolutely incredible and perfect! I can imagine how wonderful this tastes especially with the ginger syrup :) Pinning and can't wait to try this one day, thanks for sharing Amy!

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  9. I love clicking into your world, creations, & creativity! Xxxx KISSsss

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  10. I've not seen this before, Amy! But I always love to read about something new! Have a great New Year!

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  11. My favourite dessert! I need to make some too. Thanks for sharing, Amy.

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  12. Sounds very delicate... I never had this!

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  13. Perfect pudding for winter time with yummy ginger syrup....

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  14. This is a classic taste of my childhood. I used to go with my mom to the grocery shop in the markets in HK and I'd get this and remember I'd get seconds and thirds of the ginger syrup. So delicious. Thanks for showing us how to make all these recipes. Happy New Year!

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  15. thanks! look delicious. what brand of agar powder do you use?

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    1. Thank you!

      The agar powder I used is a little white package with red and blue border. The brand name is written in Thai (product of Thailand) so I don't really know the name. It printed "agar agar" in Chinese, but not the brand name. I'll try to take a picture and up date the post so you know how the package look. ;)

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    2. Hi ProFlower, I've updated the post with a picture of the Agar Agar powder that I used. Please let me know if you have any questions.

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  16. It's a definitely must try recipe...looks so good!

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  17. Fantastic! I love TFF but always think it's difficult to achieve at home. But you've convinced me otherwise ;)

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  18. I tried this before but failed because I didn't use the agar-agar...this recipe sounds easier to do...pinning for future reference...thanks for sharing:D

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  19. This looks delish! Love the photos with all those props! I could learn a thing or two from you :)

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  20. My mom has been sick with the flu, so there's a lot of ginger in the house. I should totally make this!

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  21. Love tofufa and yes this is an easier way to make it :) Yours look delicious!

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  22. The tofu dessert sounds amazing with the ginger. Love the delicate texture of the pudding.

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  23. HI Amy!! This sounds so delicious !! I love all desserts with a pudding texture. It 's so nice that you share these wonderful recipes with the world, and I would love to try this one soon. Your photos are always stunning! PS, I finally got the cocktail book today!! So excited, thank you again!! :)

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    1. Yay! Great to hear that you've finally received the book! :) Please enjoy. I'm sure you'll love the recipes.

      Thank you, Anna. Glad you like this type of dessert. Let me know what you think if you try the recipe. ;)

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  24. wow...lush,creamy and melt in mouth perfect puddings...we can imagine its heavenly taste with a sweet ginger syrup...perfect dessert,thanks for sharing :-)

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  25. Thank you Amy for the recipe! I love to eat tofu fa but recently became fearful of consuming the tofu fa due to the gypsum powder used. Now I can make my own and eat it without fear. Am looking forward to your photo of what agar agar powder you use.

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    1. Hi Mun, I've updated the post with a picture of the Agar Agar powder that I used. Please let me know if you have any questions. Thanks. :)

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  26. Hi Amy, I love this and use to made quite often too. Homemade is still the best and more healthy. Yours look silky smooth.

    Best regards.

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  27. Hi Amy

    would it make a huge difference if we used sweetened soy milk instead of regular?

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    1. The amount of sugar I used yield a not overly sweet desert. If that's what you prefer, you might want to cut down the sugar used when you cook the soy milk. But it also depends on the soy milk that you use cos the sweetness in each brand varies.

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  28. At last! I've found this recipe for ages .
    Thank you very much for sharing this. I'm trying it tomorrow

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  29. Hi Amy, when you said you can heat in up in the microwave, does it melt - I like the desert warm
    Thanks, Mary

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    1. Hi Mary, I only heat it up until slightly warm, so no, they don't melt. But if you over heat them, it might melt a little bit. :) Hope that helps.

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  30. I love tofu pudding, so decided to try my hand at it.

    I could only find 1L containers of soy milk at my local Asian grocery, so tried halving the recipe, using 1 teaspoon of agar agar. The result was terrible; my pudding never se. The texture of my batch is more liquid than pudding, and doesn't look very appetizing.

    I am not not eager to try a full batch using two 1L containers lest I end up with twice the amount of what I now have.

    Is there any way to salvage this batch?

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    1. Hi Jean, sorry about what happened to your pudding. The key to the success is to make sure the agar agar is completely dissolved in the soy milk when you heat it up. But then, different brand of agar agar might have different "solidify" power. That might be the reason why yours didn't turn out the way its supposed to be? The good news is that you can salvage this batch by heating it up again and add a little more agar agar. I hope that helps.

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  31. I look forward to making this tonight. Thanks for sharing.

    PS, for a second I thought that piece of ginger in the 4th pic was a paw of some sort ha

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    1. You're most welcome. :) I'm sure you'll enjoy this dessert. LOL, now you said it, the ginger does look like a paw of some sort. ;)

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  33. Hi Amy, I have tried many times to make this tofu fa by using the agar agar powder but not successful. it can't be set at all. I don't know where goes wrong? must I sift the soya milk? thank you.

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    1. Sorry that it didn't work out for you. The key to the success of this recipe is to make sure the agar agar powder is melted, heated to a full boil for it to release its setting power. I pass the soy milk mixture through the strainer just to make sure the agar agar powder is all melted. Hope that helps.

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