Admit it, carnivores. You still think tofu is some kind of meat-substitute for hippies; a wan, quivering excuse for a protein foisted upon the culinarily conscientious.  But that ain’t the whole story.

Tofu's a culinary as much as conscientious staple (evidence: the cuisines of China, Japan, Korea, etc.). And that’s owing to its incredible versatility—it's adaptive to a variety of preparations, able to soak up flavors and transform texturally with just the right amount of coaxing.

We won’t get ahead of ourselves with some misguided “tofu-is-cool” conversion effort. Instead we’ll just share a technique that’ll help non-tofu eaters understand just how malleable and useful an ingredient it can be. It’s called pressing tofu, and all you need is tofu, a plate, something heavy, and an open mind.

Tofu image via Shutterstock