Making Tofu and Soymilk Q&A

by on October 5, 2008
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Several of you had questions about the process of making soymilk or tofu, and rather than answer them in the comments, I’ll try to answer them here. In no particular order…

What form of soybeans do you use? in the pod, shelled or…? Because when you said you remove the skins by rubbing, I really was confused, since I just eat them in the pod or shelled and have never noticed a skin to rub off. HELP please!

Sorry for the confusion. The soybeans are dried. If you squeeze one after it’s been soaking, you’ll find that it has a translucent skin that will come off. When the soybeans are green, as in edamame, I think this skin adheres to the inside of the pod, so you never notice it.

Do you have a recommendation for calcium supplements?

I like VegLife vitamins because they are all vegan and reasonably priced. Also, the vegan version of Dr. Fuhrman’s Osteo-Sun is very good because it combines Vitamin D with calcium in the correct proportions. It’s more expensive, though.

WHAT DO YOU DO WITH ALL THE OKARA????? I can’t make cookies every day (well, I could, but I shouldn’t).

It does get to be a lot, and I can’t make cookies every day either. Lately I’ve been adding vanilla extract after the soymilk is made so that I don’t have vanilla-flavored okara. I’ve been using it to make veggie burgers and “crab” cakes, and I plan to start adding it to homemade bread. I’ll be posting my burger recipe, though maybe not right away.

Can you pre-flavor into your tofu while you are making it, not after?

You can add herbs or spices after the soymilk has curdled and before pressing it. I haven’t done it yet, though.

Is fresh tofu easily “freezable”?

Yes, you can freeze it just like packaged tofu–and its texture will change like regular tofu, becoming spongy and coarser in texture. Just wrap it well in plastic before freezing.

Can the soymilk maker be used to make other kinds of milk too?

Yes, it will also make milk from rice, oats, millet and other grains, almonds, hazelnuts, and mung beans–as well as combinations of those ingredients. It will not make raw milks, though the older version of the machine will.

How long does the homemade soymilk keep? Is the fridge life much shorter than commercial brands?

Since it doesn’t contain any preservatives, I wouldn’t feel safe using it after 5 or 6 days. When in doubt, smell it to make sure it hasn’t gone bad.

Does one batch of soy milk make one block of tofu?

I’m able to get about 8 ounces, or a half-sized block, out of one double-strength batch of soymilk (soymilk made using twice as many soybeans as usual). Using a different coagulator and letting it curdle for a longer time might increase the amount of tofu.

Is there a substitute for agave nectar?

I’m not sure if you mean specifically in soymilk, but generally you can use another sweetener, such as granulated sugar, maple syrup, or rice syrup, anywhere agave nectar is called for. I like agave in soymilk because it has a light taste and dissolves easily.

Can you make silken tofu at home?

From what I’ve read, it’s very difficult to make silken tofu at home, and I’ve never tried.

Have you ever made homemade tempeh? I’ve been wanting to try that for some time now, but I still haven’t figured out what to use for an incubator.

I’m afraid I haven’t. I once bought tempeh starter on a whim, but I never got around to using it. Like you, I’d like to give it a try someday. Fresh tempeh is supposed to be very delicious.

Can you send or post on this blog the exact name of the product and the item number for us in case we want to order one off Amazon?

Here’s a link to the SoyQuick Premier 930P at Amazon. If you look carefully, there are instructions there on how to get free shipping. You can also order it directly from the SoyQuick website. Just click SoyQuick website!


If there are any questions I missed, just ask and I’ll try to answer them in the comments. I promise to post the recipe I made with my fresh tofu tomorrow . For now, I need to rest my eyes a little!

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 jjones444 November 17, 2010 at 9:28 am

I love learning new recipes, and especially ones that are low in sugar and are gluten free. I have celiac disease so baking is kind of a nightmare, but I’m learning how to make GF foods that are actually edible. Because I can’t eat wheat and I don’t eat meat, I have to take lots of supplements and vitamins to make up for what I miss. Thanks for the recipes and ideas!

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