Herbal Tofu with Apples and Pears

September 16th, 2008 10:22 pm by Kelly Garbato

Tonight, I have a somewhat odd DIY recipe to share: Herbal Tofu with Apples and Pears. The title pretty much says it all.

Currently, we’re knee-deep in an obscene amount of home-grown produce. We’ve got a garden with at least six varieties of tomatoes (grape, cherry, roma, beefsteak and some other kinds whose names we’ve long since forgotten); green pepper; jalapenos; green and yellow zucchini; Italian “spaghetti” squash; cantaloupe; watermelon; gourds; pumpkins…and, um, I think that’s it. I could be mistaken, though.

Since summer blossomed, we also discovered that we have four apple and two pear trees, as well as some blackberry bushes that I refuse to harvest, seeing as they share the forest/pasture border with a whole lotta poison ivy. Berries may be yummy, but they’re still not worth it. We also have two trees that appear to be fruit-bearing, but we’ve yet to name that fruit. So, to recap…we have about 45 bags of apples sitting in our garage, along with three bags of overripe pears and two big fat watermelons.

I devised this particular recipe while doing yoga, my wandering mind trying to figure out what the eff to do with all those apples (!). My Herbal Tofu with Apples and Pears dish is technically “dog food,” but like most of my for-canine concoctions, Shane and I loved it too.

This recipe fills two large baking pans (remember, I bake in bulk), but since the produce shrinks during baking, it actually yields a smaller serving than you might think. Maybe….16 cups after cooking? The entire recipe fit in my third-largest Tupperware container, in any case.

Herbal Tofu with Apples and Pears

2008-09-16 - Herbal Tofu - 0004


Six caffeine-free tea bags, preferably herbal
Five cups of water
Four pressed bricks of Firm or Extra-Firm Tofu
Approximately 8 apples
Approximately 6 pears
Brown Sugar

2 large baking pans (or use one pan and cut this recipe in half)


1. Press your tofu one to three hours before beginning. (See #4 below.)

2. Once you’re ready to begin, preheat your oven to 350.

3. Start by bringing the water to a boil in a saucepan. Once the water’s boiling, take it off the heat and add the tea bags.

Let steep for a half hour. (But continue on with the rest of the directions in the mean time!)

We used Chanakara brand herbal tea; four bags of the dragonfruit, and two of the vanilla honeybush. Please note: if you are, in fact, baking this dish for canine consumption, make sure you use caffeine-free tea!

4. Slice the pressed tofu into 1″x1″ cubes. Line the baking pans with the cubed tofu.

It’s important that you press the tofu beforehand – by removing the excess water, you allow the tofu to soak up as much of the herbal tea as possible. If you don’t know what pressed tofu is, see these instructions at about.com – but press it for at least an hour (preferably two), and use reusable/bath towels instead of disposable paper towels. Al Gore will thank you. Personally.

5. Cut your apples into cubes similar in size to those of the tofu. Add to baking pan. Try to cover the entire bottom of your pan(s) with the apples and tofu. Use more or less than the recommended serving of apples, depending on your situation.

6. Remove the tea bags from the saucepan. Pour the tea on top of the tofu/apple mix.

7. Sprinkle two tablespoons of brown sugar on the top of your tofu/apple mixture. Do not stir.

8. Cube your pears as you did the apples. Place them on top of your apple/tofu mixture. Again, use more or less pears depending on how many you have available, and how much room is left in your pan(s). Feel free to add in more apples if you’ve got extra room.

9. Sprinkle one more tablespoon of brown sugar on top of the pears; then sprinkle with cloves and cinnamon to taste.

10. Cook uncovered at 350 degrees for one hour. If you’re making a full recipe with two baking pans, rotate racks at the half hour mark.

11. After an hour, set the oven door open a crack and bake uncovered at 350 degrees for another half hour. This will allow the water to evaporate.

Alternately, you can drain and drink the water like tea….though the pear chunks might be a little…disconcerting. Frugal but weird.

12. Serve warm.

13. Bask in glow of happy, slurpy doggeh kisses. (Optional.)

(Crossposted to.)



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One Response to “Herbal Tofu with Apples and Pears”

  1. easyVegan.info » Blog Archive » “Candied” Chai Pears Says:

    […] week, I shared a recipe for Herbal Tofu with Apples and Pears, a yummy dish for dogs and people. This week, I decided to try out a slightly different version, […]

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