Aburaageis a soyabean based dish of Japanese origin. According to Japanese myths the dish was symbolized by fox Kitsune and Patron Inari. Aburaage or abura-age is a deep fried and thin sliced tofu, which is used in the preparation of several soups, one pot cookery, noodle dishes and stews. The deep fried tofu slices can be purchased from any Asian departmental stores. The abura-age is enjoyed by itself or is served as a side dish with the bowl of rice. While preparing aburaage the tofu slices are deep fried till they turn crispy and golden brown. Even after deep frying the abura-age- looks perfectly spongy and white from inside. Abura-age translates to oil-fried tofu in Japanese.
Ingredients Used and Popular Method of Preparation of Aburaage
Regular firm tofu, vegetable oil and hot water is required for the preparation of aburaage. The excess moisture of the tofu is cleaned by pressing it against the cloth. Then the firm tofu blocks are halved into the triangular shaped pieces and fried in vegetable oil. The oil is wiped out of the aburaage by placing it under the hot water. Sometimes the commercially bought abura-age may look stale due to the over oil absorbed by it but its texture can be refreshed through oil removal system. Thus, the oil free abura-age can be baked and used in the preparation of stews. The abura-age can be eaten as alone or they can be stuffed with various ingredients like cabbage, mushroom, natto, hijiki seaweed or any other vegetable of that kind. Some aburrage recipes also suggest using stuffing ingredients like minced meats, kimchi and eggs. The abura-age is baked in the cloth pockets and is tied using the dried Japanese root vegetable.
Popular Aburaage Recipes
- Japanese Radish and Aburaage Miso Soup: This is a very simple abura-age recipe, where the Japanese white radish is cooked in bonito soup stock and abura-age and is flavored with white or red miso.
- Stuffed Abura-age: This is one of the elegant aburaage recipes where the abura-age is stuffed with pork hash filling and cooked in chicken broth sauce.