From time to time I cook tofu, or tempeh, as the case may be. Like everyone else, I found that Tofu (or tempeh) takes on the flavor of whatever seasoning is being used. That’s the great thing about it: it’s versatility.

This recipe is fairly straightforward, it’s basically tofu or tempeh braised in a soy sauce, vinegar, tomato paste and mustard combination. It’s delicious hot over rice or toast, and it’s great for sandwiches too. If you’re using tempeh, it needs a longer time to simmer to absorb the flavors, so use extra liquid in the sauce.



1 pound tempeh or firm tofu
1 onion, peeled and chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1½ to cups water or vegetable broth
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons vinegar
¼ cup tomato paste
¼ teaspoon dry mustard
Pepper to taste


  1. If using tofu, rinse and chop into 1-inch cubes. If using tempeh, rinse and slice into bars about ¼-inch thick and 2 inches wide.
  2.  Heat oil in a wok or large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté until golden.  Stir in water or broth (use 1½ cups for tofu, 2 cups for tempeh), soy sauce, vinegar, tomato paste, mustard and pepper. Bring to a boil. Arrange tofu or tempeh in the pan or wok. Spoon the sauce over the cubes or slices, making sure they are covered.
  3.  If you’re serving the dish hot, cover and simmer about 20 minutes for tofu, ½ hour or longer for tempeh. If you want to use the cubes and slices for sandwiches, cook uncovered over low heat until the sauce is evaporated and absorbed, making a glaze over the cubes or slices. Keep an eye out to prevent sticking and burning.
    Yield: 4
    Note: For a more seasoned taste, add a clove of minced garlic and a pinch of cayenne to the onion when sautéing, and a tablespoon of chopped fresh ginger near the end of the sautéing.