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Tofu is usually associated with Asian cooking, especially stir-fries. However, thanks to its neutral flavor, it's also perfectly suitable for other cooking styles, especially Italian.
Making our tofu mushroom recipe taste Italian it's simple. Use a skillet instead of a wok. Substitute fresh ginger for fresh garlic. Green onions for Italian flat-leaf parsley. Sesame oil for extra virgin olive oil.
And for the rich, umami-loaded flavor of soy sauce, we use dried porcini mushrooms and their soaking water.
Our tofu mushroom recipe is the plant-based version of a famous Italian dish called "scaloppine ai funghi," or mushroom scaloppini.
As Wikipedia perfectly puts it, "scaloppine is a type of Italian dish that comes in many forms. It consists of thinly sliced meat, most often beef, veal, or chicken, dredged in wheat flour and sautéed in various reduction sauces."
In this meal, we replace the meat with slices of firm tofu and follow the original Italian recipe for scaloppini almost to the letter.
We use simple pantry ingredients to recreate a beloved, classic Italian dish that you can serve for a quick and delicious dinner on some pasta or boiled rice.
Note: the texture of tofu is tender and not as chewy as real meat. For a chewy texture, more similar to meat, check out our seitan steaks recipe.
You can use most types of fresh mushrooms for this recipe. We recommend white button mushrooms, cremini mushrooms, portobello mushrooms, oyster mushrooms, chanterelles mushrooms, white beech mushrooms, trumpet mushrooms, or a mix of one or more varieties.
We don't recommend maitake, enoki, or shiitake mushrooms for this recipe, as they are not common in Italian cooking.
You can get the mushrooms pre-chopped or chop them yourself at home.
Dried mushrooms are optional; however, they add a ton of flavor to this recipe, and we recommend them. They are a natural umami booster and pack an intense mushroom flavor that fresh supermarket mushrooms often lack.
Dried mushrooms are easy to find in most supermarkets. Dried porcini mushrooms are best for Italian-inspired cooking; a dried wild mushroom mix also works well.
They need to be soaked for 10 minutes in ⅓ of a cup of hot water to release their intense flavor, which the other mushrooms will absorb.
If you don't have dried mushrooms, you can replace them with a couple of tablespoons of soy sauce.
We add a couple of crushed garlic cloves to cook the mushrooms and infuse a mild garlic flavor. For more garlic flavor, you can mince the garlic.
We use extra virgin olive oil to pan-fry the mushrooms and the tofu.
Use firm tofu or extra firm tofu. It's easy to cut them into slices and cook them as if they were small cutlets. This recipe won't work with other types of tofu, such as silken or soft tofu.
We used a small amount of all-purpose flour to coat the tofu slices. This practice is also used in the Italian recipe of mushroom scaloppine, where the thin meat slices are coated in flour.
The flour adds creaminess to both the tofu slices and the mushroom sauce. It makes the meal feel homey and cozy.
To make this recipe gluten-free, substitute cornstarch for flour.
White wine is a staple in Italian cooking, but if you don't drink wine, you can replace it with vegetable broth.
We use dry white wine to deglaze the pan with the tofu slices and add a touch of acidity and boost the flavor of the dish.
A small amount of vegetable broth helps create a pleasant mushroom sauce and prevents the tofu mushroom from getting dry. We use store-bought vegetable broth since this is a quick 30-minute recipe.
Fresh flat-leaf parsley is such an essential ingredient with mushrooms that most supermarkets in Italy sell a few stalks of parsley together with the mushrooms.
And this tofu mushroom recipe is not complete without a handful of finely chopped flat-leaf parsley.
Salt and pepper
We use sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Cook the mushrooms
Soak the dried porcini mushroom with hot water for 10 minutes.
Note: adding dried porcini mushrooms is optional. Dried mushrooms help boost the mushroom flavor of the dish.
To a large skillet (non-stick preferably), add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, crushed garlic, and sliced mushrooms. Cook on high heat for 5 minutes, stirring often.
Add the soaked dried mushrooms and their soaking water. Season with salt and pepper and cook for another 5 minutes, or until there's no excess water in the pan.
When the mushrooms are cooked, and most of their excess water has evaporated, transfer them to a bowl.
Cook the tofu
While the mushrooms cook, slice the tofu into ⅙ to ¼ inch (0.5 cm) slices. There's no need to press it or pat it dry.
We get 6 slices from 8 ounces of firm tofu (about half of a 16-ounce tofu block) and serve 3 slices per person.
Add all-purpose flour to a plate, then coat each slice of tofu in the flour.
On the same pan, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, then add the tofu slices. Cook the tofu slices on medium heat for about 4 to 5 minutes, turning them once.
Season the tofu on both sides with salt and pepper.
When the tofu is almost ready, add the white wine to the pan and let it evaporate.
Add the mushrooms to the tofu, add the vegetable broth and chopped parsley, and finish cooking for another 2 minutes.
We recommend serving three slices of tofu per person, with some mushrooms on the side.
To make this tofu mushrooms recipe a complete dinner, serve it with a side of boiled rice or pasta.
To add even more vegetables, we can recommend a few simple salads and veggies to serve on the side. Check out our:
- Simple side salad - easy, quick, and crunchy.
- Italian salad with creamy Italian dressing
- Crunchy kale chips oven-baked with extra virgin olive oil
- Roasted artichokes - a delicious, earthy, and nutty side dish
- Cucumber and tomato salad - fresh, crunchy, and juicy
- Brussels sprout salad - made with raw shaved Brussels sprouts
- Roasted broccoli - simple and effective
- Roasted Brussels sprout - glazed with maple syrup
More Tofu Recipes
Curious to try more delicious tofu recipes? Take a look at these; they are all easy and tasty:
- Creamy lemon tofu made on a pan in no time
- Versatile fried tofu - you can add it to salads and more
- Sticky orange tofu with an irresistible sweet and sour sauce
- Tofu in pizzaiola sauce - another Italian classic made plant-based
- Scrambled tofu - a must try for breakfast or lunch
- Tofu salad - crunchy salad, tofu cubes, and creamy dressing
- Tofu meatballs in marinara sauce - perfect on pasta or in a sub
- Tofu soup - the easiest, most delicious tofu soup for every season
More Mushroom Recipes
Store the pan-fried tofu with mushrooms for up to 24 hours in the fridge, best if in an air-tight container.
Reheat in the microwave for 2 minutes or on a pan with a drizzle of olive oil or a dash of water. We do not recommend freezing this recipe.
Tofu Mushroom Recipe
- Large nonstick pan
- 20 ounces mushrooms white, brown, champignon, portobello, etc
- ¼ cup dried porcini mushrooms (optional) + ⅓ cup of hot water to soak them
- 2 cloves garlic
- 3 tablespoons olive oil 1 for the mushrooms, 2 for the tofu
- 8 ounces tofu firm
- ⅓ cup flour
- ⅓ cup white wine or vegetable broth
- ⅓ cup vegetable broth or water
- 1 handful parsley
- salt and pepper to taste
COOK THE MUSHROOMS
- Soak the dried porcini mushroom with hot water for 10 minutes.Note: adding dried porcini mushrooms is optional. Dried mushrooms help boost the mushroom flavour of the dish.
- To a large skillet (non-stick preferably), add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, crushed garlic, and sliced mushrooms. Cook on high heat for 5 minutes, stirring often.
- Add the soaked dried mushrooms and their soaking water. Season with salt and pepper and cook for another 5 minutes, or until there's no excess water in the pan.
- When the mushrooms are cooked, and most of their excess water has evaporated, transfer them to a bowl.
COOK THE TOFU
- While the mushrooms cook, slice the tofu into ⅙ to ¼ inch (0.5 cm) slices. There's no need to press it or pat it dry.We get 6 slices from 8 ounces of firm tofu (about half of a 16-ounce tofu block) and serve 3 slices per person.Add all-purpose flour to a plate, then coat each slice of tofu in the flour.
- On the same pan, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, then add the tofu slices. Cook the tofu slices on medium heat for about 4 to 5 minutes, turning them once.
- When the tofu is almost ready, add the white wine to the pan and let it evaporate.
- Add the mushrooms to the tofu, add the vegetable broth and chopped parsley, and finish cooking for another 2 minutes.
- We recommend serving three slices of tofu per person, with some mushrooms on the side.