Nori Wraps With Baked Spicy Peanut Tofu

Time1 hour
YieldsServes 4
Two plates hold strips of baked tofu in a dark brown sauce.
(Lindsay Kreighbaum / For The Times; prop styling by Dorothy Hoover)
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I always have at least one block of firm tofu in my refrigerator because it lasts forever and can be used in so many different preparations. Chili crisp is used with a heavy hand in my kitchen. I combine it with a bit of peanut butter to make a quick sauce that thickly coats the tofu and flavors it throughout as it bakes. I probably make some form of this dish at least once a week — the protein changes but the rice, veggies and roasted seaweed snacks are a constant.


Set a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 400 degrees. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.


Stand the blocks of tofu on their sides and cut each block in half lengthwise, creating 2 thinner rectangles, about 1/2-inch thick. Lay each rectangle flat with the longer side facing you. Cut each rectangle crosswise into 6 long pieces (24 pieces total). Pat the tofu dry, then set aside.


In a small baking dish or shallow bowl, combine the peanut butter, Shaoxing wine, vegetable oil, chili crisp, sugar, soy sauce and ginger, and whisk until smooth. Season the tofu on all sides with salt and pepper. Add 3 to 5 pieces of tofu to the peanut butter mixture and gently turn the tofu to coat in the sauce, then place the tofu pieces on the prepared sheet pan in a single layer. Repeat this process with the remaining tofu, reserving any leftover sauce that remains in the baking dish or bowl.


Place the baking sheet in the oven and bake the tofu, flipping each piece halfway through cooking and brushing with any remaining sauce, until it is deeply browned and the sauce feels dry to the touch, 40 to 45 minutes.


Transfer the baked tofu to a serving platter and serve alongside the lettuce, cucumbers, scallions and herbs and more chili crisp. Serve with steamed jasmine rice and roasted nori sheets for making individual packets or bowls.