Hannah Kaminsky, author of My Sweet Vegan ~ Tofu feta has been a mainstay in my own personal recipe repertoire for years now, a mighty tasty marinated tofu creation, packing a vinegary punch and pleasantly herbaceous bite. Feta it is not, and no one would likely confuse the two, but it makes for a highly acceptable substitute in everyday meals. However, for those with access to a serious health food store, “good enough” need not suffice- Sunergia, the little known but growing gourmet tofu makers have an alternative that blows all the others out of the water.
Although they’ve sadly discontinued 2/3 of their feta flavors, the Mediterranean Herb variety still lives on, and is quite a catch to find. Tangy, unmistakably cheesy, and exactly what I remember dairy-based feta to be, it both crumbles and slices beautifully, making it the perfect accent to all sorts of dishes. It’s hard to even think about leaving it out of my salads these days, as that soft, salty piquancy makes it the perfect foil to crisp, fresh veggies. Many lunches these days are accented by a simple combination of diced tomatoes and cucumbers, a handful of parsley and scallion, a touch of olive oil, and a sprinkle of this addictive feta.
It also works nicely over hot dishes too, of course! Pictured below is a quick melange of roasted onions and delicata squash, topped of course with more feta. Just a touch of it seems to perk up any hum-drum dish. If you’re in need of an easy flavor enhancer, look no further- I have yet to find a savory dish that it didn’t brighten up nicely.
Harder to hunt down but even more illustrious, their Bleu Cheese is near to-die for. Pungent, sour, and unmistakably umami, it’s hard to describe the flavor, but I can tell you it’s worth tasting for yourself to find out. Like standard bleu (or blue, depending on who you ask,) it may be more of an acquired taste, but die-hard cheese lovers are bound to delight in this cruelty-free alternative. There’s simply nothing else on the market like it.
Of course, the bulk of Sungeria‘s offerings are of regular tofu, but there’s nothing “standard” about them. Flavored with things like pesto, peanut and ginger, portabello, and a whole range of others, these are some of the most flavorful and unique soy products I’ve had the pleasure of discovering. More than just spices and herbs are included, as they throw in tons of crunchy textural enhancers, like sunflower seeds, quinoa, chia seeds, and even pine nuts where appropriate. These are some of the few tofus that anyone could happily eat plain, cold, and completely unadorned. My favorite use for any of the varieties is wrapped up in sushi rolls, adding a whole new dimension to the typical futomaki.
Although my rolling skills could use some work, they also are right at home in the middle of a light and veggie-packed spring roll, the perfect no-cook appetizer or entree for a hot summer’s day.
The real disappointment here, as I’ve alluded to periodically, is that all of the above are very hard to find. You won’t see them at the standard grocery store, and only at a select few Whole Foods’, but should all else fail, you can order them online.