Looking for a soy free tofu? This vegan Burmese Chickpea Tofu (also called shan tofu) is an easy homemade tofu recipe to make and is a healthy and delicious source of protein.
As a known tofu hating vegetarian you might be scratching your head wondering why I’m sharing a tofu recipe with you today.
Well, you see, this Burmese Chickpea Tofu recipe I’m about to share isn’t really tofu. Tofu is made from bean curd, however, Burmese tofu is made from chickpea flour. Burmese tofu, or chickpea tofu or shan tofu, as it is sometimes called, is actually more similar to polenta than tofu, as I’ll explain.
As a lover of chickpeas and chickpea flour I couldn’t wait to give chickpea tofu a try after reading about it on Sarah Brinson’s wonderful blog. However, while Sarah’s recipe is totally doable, I’m too impatient to leave the chickpea flour soaking for 12 hours and wait another 8 hours before eating it. So I came across another recipe for Burmese tofu, which didn’t require soaking and long waits. So I halved it (since I knew it was unlikely my husband would be keen to give it a try), and set about giving it a go.
If you’ve made polenta before, then the process is not too dissimilar. Chickpea flour is whisked together with water and salt and added to a saucepan of boiling water and whisked until thick and glossy, before being poured into a pan to set. This tofu sets in about an hour and is soft and pillowy, with that slightly nutty chickpea flavour that I love.
The other wonderful thing about this chickpea tofu recipe, apart from the fact that it’s a wonderful soy free alternative to tofu, is that it is also budget friendly too, as chickpea flour is relatively cheap (especially if you are able to pick it up from an Indian grocer). It is also extremely versatile too – add it to salads, stir fries, soups. I’m a little addicted to it at the moment, I’ve made 3 batches in the last 4 days, and have been having fun experimenting with it in the kitchen.
So tell me, have you ever tried chickpea tofu?
Very lightly adapted from this recipe which was sourced from The Burmese Kitchen: Recipes from the Golden Land
5 minPrep Time
20 minCook Time
25 minTotal Time
- 1 cup chickpea flour (garbanzo bean flour /besan flour)
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp ground turmeric (optional)
- 3 cups water, divided
- neutral flavoured oil such as canola, sunflower (safflower)
- Place the chickpea flour in a bowl along with the salt and turmeric (if using). Whisk to combine. Add 1 1/2 cups of water and whisk until smooth.
- Lightly oil 20cm (8 inch) x 20cm (8 inch) square baking dish or cake tin.
- Bring the remaining 1 1/2 cups of water to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-high and add the chickpea flour and water mixture. Whisk over the heat until the mixture becomes really thick and glossy. This should take about 8 minutes.
- Pour immediately into the prepared baking dish and leave to cool at room temperature for at least 1 hour. The longer it sits, the more water will drain out of the tofu and the firmer it will get.
- Cut into whatever size and shape you like. This will depend on how you are going to use it. I cut it into 2 to 3 cm cubes. Store in an airtight container and use within 3 days. Some commenters have had success freezing it, but it is not something I have tried myself.