Orange Sesame Yuba Rolls


 

A while back I learned about yuba, or tofu skin. If you’ve never heard of it, it’s basically the film that coagulates on the top of a boiled pan of soymilk.

Hungry yet?

But here’s the thing… this stuff is really good, but in kind of a strange way.

You see, I finally tried it, and it turns out that I love this stuff. I can imagine doing so much with it. Yuba is my friend!

With that said, I can see how it might be an acquired… um, texture to get used to. Pre-fried it looks a lot like a deflated balloon. It also has sort of a funny smell when you cook it the first time through (hey, just being honest). But, other than that…it’s great! It has a peculiar chewy and crispy texture when pan fried. It can also be used in a variety of other ways: as a dumpling wrap, vegan sausage casing, or just eatin’ fresh with some simple seasoning. Just like tofu, it soaks up any and every flavor you let it. And if you buy the dried, frozen or fresh varieties, it is super easy to prepare. Like, easier than tofu. For serious!

Now are you more interested? I hope so.

 

This stuff is incredibly common in Asian cuisine, but is just starting to make its way into the kitchens of the good ol’ US of A. I read about it first here.

And then again I was reminded once again when I came across this post here.  Of course, seasoned foodies have known about this stuff for years.

Since I spend about two hours a month scouring our local Asian superstore, I have had many an opportunity to pick some of this stuff up. But, I always forgot. On our last trip though, my husband (the genius of our operation) reminded me that I needed to get some yuba. Asap. Happily there was plenty available in the store’s freezer section (and I bet you’ll be able to find some at your local Asian market too, if you have one nearby)… one of the packages was three feet long! We opted for the small package, and the 4 sheets still ended up being 2 feet across when unrolled. For two bucks, this is a steal!

When unwrapped, they look like this still folded:

And then after you soak it in warm water for just a few seconds (seriously… maybe 15 seconds), drain the water and separate the sheets, it looks like this:

Kinda weird, I admit; stay with me here.

Then, you carefully take one sheet (again, mine were about 24″ in diameter) and fold it in half, or thirds, and roll it up tightly making a tube approximately 8-10″ long. Once they are all rolled up, pan fry them in a well seasoned cast iron or non stick pan wth about 1 tbsp canola oil over medium to medium-high heat. Fry until golden brown on each side, flipping as necessary. This will make them nice and sturdy to cook in the sauce.

 

Next, make your sauce by gathering all sauce ingredients and following the simple instructions below *.

Place cut yuba rolls into the same pan you browned them in and pour sauce over to coat. There will be a good bit of extra liquid; this is okay!  Let them cook on medium heat until sauce thickens and all the liquid pretty much disappears, flipping yuba rolls halfway through. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.

That’s it! Serve on top of rice, mixed in with veggies, or whatever you fancy. I loved these on top of a bed of greens and brown sushi rice, and then topped with a big drizzle of homemade garlic chili sauce–Sriracha would be perfect here (I loved it so), but it hurts my belly.

Nom.

* Sauce

Orange Sesame Yuba Sauce
  1. Stir together bouillon cubes and boiling water until completely dissolved.
  2. Whisk in other ingredients until combined.
  3. Pour over prepared yuba after pan frying to golden brown.
  4. Follow directions for cooking yuba with sauce.

Preparation time: 30 minute(s)

Cooking time: 15 minute(s)

Diet type: Vegan

Diet (other): Gluten free

Number of servings (yield): 8

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24 Responses to Orange Sesame Yuba Rolls

  1. Julie says:

    Came across this when I stumbled upon a pkg of dried yuba in the back of my pantry yesterday. Made it tonight. Wow. Even my 15 yr old carnivore son loved it. One question though Any tips on rehydrating and rolling the yuba so it stays neatly rolled? Maybe my kind of fell apart because it was dried rather than fresh???? Dunno. But very yummy anyway. Thanks.

  2. John says:

    I made this for the first time last night. All I can is, “Wow!” Seriously, I could eat this every day.

    I can’t tell you how many times I’ve passed yuba by in H-Mart, not even noticing it until I was looking for it. It’s going to be in my basket every week from now on.

    The texture reminds me of fried egg whites, so I’m going to experiment with some breakfast ideas.

    Thank you so much for posting this.

  3. Mmmm, I love trying new ingredients, and this recipe is right up my alley!

  4. Jessica says:

    Isn’t tofu skin awesome? I found it a while ago when I was making a vegan/GF sausage recipe, it’s so fun to play with!

  5. Hannah says:

    Jackpot! Yuba is one of my all-time favorite savory things, no matter how it’s flavored or prepared. I just love that texture! It’s near impossible for me to find, but next time I get my hands on some, I know just what to do with it…

  6. Alma says:

    Hi Allyson! Your yuba recipe looks so good! It’s on the top of my list of rad things to make. I am also a fan of yuba. It was pretty much love at first sight. I first came across it in a NY Times article. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/08/06/magazine/06food.html I’ve made the spicy “omelet” several times and each time I changed it up a little. It’s a super easy recipe and so satisfying! Thanks for posting yours.

  7. Heather says:

    I recently found the (really) large round yuba packages and made su ji (Chinese Vegetarian Chicken) a couple of days ago. Previously, I had to go out of town to a dedicated Japanese grocery store to find it. While I didn’t particularly care for the seasonings used in the version of su ji I tried, I was also thinking that I could use the yuba to do some lighter flavors. Lo and behold, you read my mind. I’ve also used yuba to make easy baked gluten-free spring rolls and they worked like a dream. I’m definitely going to try this and use yuba more in the future, especially now that I can find it locally.

  8. Sneaky Vegan says:

    OMG this looks amazing!!! I want!

  9. Pk says:

    I’ve never heard it called yuba before. T&T – the Asian grocery store – sells it fresh and frozen, although it’s labeled as bean curd sheets. Recipe looks great!

  10. Miss Alix says:

    Wow these look so yummy. I think yuba is awesome, but you’re right it is a little weird too. I would really like to try to make some stuff with it.

    • allyson says:

      thanks, Alix! After trying this stuff out, and despite its weirdness, I still want to make a million things with it: little savory dumpling purses, soup, vegan sausages, stir fry… the possibilities are endless. :)

  11. Laurel says:

    That looks really, really wonderful, not to mention versatile. I could definitely see that showing up on the menu several times a week. Well, that is if I wasn’t allergic to soy too. mmph
    Beautiful photos as usual, you are so creative! I think I’ll go be jealous for a while. :D

    • allyson says:

      booo on your soy allergy, Laurel. don’t worry… it was horrible tasting, i promise ;) ;)

      but seriously, thank you for being so darn nice and leaving a comment on a dish you can’t even eat!!

      <3

  12. Ooh I will look for yuba next time I’m at the Asian market!

    • allyson says:

      do it! (thanks to Pk, be sure to look out for a flat package called “bean curd sheets”!)
      i hope you love it too, Becky!

  13. Roxan says:

    I love yuba! I buy it dried at the indonesian market by my place. It’s pretty good if you break it up and add it to a coconut curry… I love the chewiness of it. I will try rolling it up and frying it like you did – I think I will love the chewiness of the middle but crispiness of the outside!

  14. Jojo says:

    I love yuba! There’s a Japanese restaurant around the corner from my house that does something called Yubamaki which is veggies wrapped in yuba, tied up with a noodle & deep fried. SO delicious!

  15. Caitlin says:

    wow- that looks sososo good! i can’t believe the skin on top of warmed soymilk can be used to make such a delicious dish.

    i wonder how difficult it would be to MAKE yuba yourself? probably pretty hard..i know that whenever i warm soymilk on the stove, it goes from being warm to boiling and expanding over the pot in a short amount of time.

    you rock ;)

    • allyson says:

      squee! thanks, Caitlin!

      Yeah, JD and I tried watching a few tutorials on making it yourself… he’s still convinced it’s worth a try, but me… not so much. ;) something about skimming the skins from the pot over and over until all milk is gone, and then laying them flat and drying them out seems a little more time consuming than ripping open a package and re-hydrating for 5 seconds. ;)

      seriously, that’s one of the best perks of the frozen stuff… it’s so easy!

  16. Christaface says:

    Wow, this looks SO good! I don’t know that I’ll be able to find this ingredient in my small town, but the next time we’re in Vancouver I’ll be making a special stop. Fantastic photos!