Comfort Food: Vegetarian Tau Yu Bak (Braised Tofu in Soy Sauce)

One challenging aspect of being almost vegetarian is when I am in need of comfort food. Most of the things I crave from childhood inevitably contain meat of some sort. Hence, I am almost vegetarian: I typically pick around the meat in a dish, especially when I am eating out.

On a day like today, when I am still reeling from a week of the flu and unhealthy weather, I am hankering for some culinary comfort. Inspired by my Mommy who takes time & care to vegetarian-ise my favourite foods, I decided I would try to make a vegetarian version of one of my childhood favourites: Tau Yu Bak, or Braised Tofu in Soy Sauce. I found this vegetarian version of a Grandma Favourite online. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Vegetarian Tau Yu Bak (Braised Tofu in Soy Sauce)

adapted from

  • 3 cups waterTau yu bak 2
  • 4 hard boiled eggs
  • 6 garlic cloves (smashed with the back of a knife to release flavour)
  • 4 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 3 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 block of firm tofu (cut into small rectangular pieces)
  • 1 packet of tofu puffs (optional)
  • 1 stick of cinnamon
  • 2 star anise
  • 3 cloves

1. Heat up water in a medium pot and bring to boil. Lower heat.

2. Add tofu, tofu puffs, garlic, soy sauces, brown sugar, cinnamon, star anise & cloves. Stir gently to mix everything.

3. Bring to a boil then add peeled hard boiled eggs.

4. Lower the heat to medium and braise for 15 minutes.

5. Turn the heat to lowest for another 25 – 30 minutes.

6. Serve with steamed rice or noodles.

8 Replies to “Comfort Food: Vegetarian Tau Yu Bak (Braised Tofu in Soy Sauce)”

  1. I’m so sorry to hear you’ve had the flu. I hope your feeling better and that food is proving to be good medicine. Your tofu dish looks really interesting. I’ve just found a new brand of tofu available in my supermarket, so we had salt and pepper tofu with garlicky broccoli for dinner.


    1. Thanks so much Su. It took a while to recover from this one (although it wasn’t terribly bad) – the weather/haze kinda dragged out the recovery process.

      Your salt & pepper tofu sounds delice! Now I want to make me some. Do you have a decent selection of tofu available to you?


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