March 28, 2014


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These patties are a powerful weapon in my ongoing campaign to convert tofu critics into
fans. Ganmodoki are the best tofu patties ever — fabulously flavourful, with an addictive crispy crust. They make great vegan burgers, tucked into whole-wheat buns. Or slide them into pocket pitas with sandwich fixin’s. You can also enjoy burger- or slider-sized Ganmodoki on their own with salad. Adapted from a Windup Bird Café recipe.

       A Ganmodoki burger. Credit: Susan Sampson


8 oz (250 g) firm tofu
4 oz (125 g) soft (silken) tofu
1 clove garlic
1 shallot, halved
1 large button mushroom, halved
1/4 cup (60 mL) each: coarsely chopped red bell pepper, carrot
2 tbsp (30 mL) frozen, thawed, shelled edamame
3 tbsp (45 mL) grapeseed or canola oil, divided
1/2 tsp (2 mL) or more kosher salt
1 tbsp (15 mL) honey or agave syrup
1 tsp (5 mL) each: miso, low-sodium soy sauce
1/2 tsp (2 mL) toasted sesame oil
1/4 tsp (1 mL) dijon mustard
2 tbsp (30 mL) cornstarch
1 tbsp (15 mL) sesame seeds
1 tsp (5 mL) crushed almonds
Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Place firm tofu in fine-mesh sieve and cover with paper towel. Place soft tofu in another fine-mesh sieve, cover with paper towel and top with small, weighted bowl. Let sit 1 hour, or until pressed and drained.

With food processor running, drop in garlic to chop. Add shallot, mushroom, pepper, carrot and edamame. Pulse to mince, leaving some texture. (You should have 1 to 1-1/4 cups/250 to 300 mL.)

In 12-inch (30 cm) skillet (preferably cast iron or non-stick), heat 1 tbsp (15 mL) oil on medium until shimmery. Add vegetable mixture and 1/4 tsp (1 mL) salt. Cook, stirring often, 3 minutes, or until softened and turning golden. Scrape into medium bowl. Cool 5 minutes. Wipe pan well and reserve.

Add honey or syrup, miso, soy sauce, sesame oil and mustard to vegetable mixture. Combine with fork. Sprinkle with cornstarch. Combine evenly. Add sesame seeds, almonds, soft tofu, 1/4 tsp (1 mL) salt and pepper. Crumble in firm tofu. Mash together with fork. Adjust salt. Pat into 4 to 8 patties (each 1/2 inch/1 cm thick).

In reserved skillet, heat remaining 2 tbsp (30 mL) oil on medium until shimmery. Add patties. Cook, turning once, 2 to 3 minutes per side, until heated through, with crisp, golden brown crusts.

Makes 4 to 8 patties. 

  • For the crushed almonds, I use thinly sliced nuts and crumble them with my fingers.
  • Burger-sized patties are about 3-1/2 inches (8 cm) in diameter.

Oh No: Turning these patties is the only tricky part of an otherwise easy recipe. They can break if you turn them roughly and/or don’t allow the crispy crust to develop. Slider-sized patties are easier to handle than the burger size.