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The Boston Globe reports on the efforts of a molecular biologist, Xiang F. Kong, to develop tofu products that taste more like meat.

“Tofu is good for people, rich in protein and in substances that may reduce the risk of cancer and heart disease,” the Globe writes. “But you'd probably need a molecular biologist to figure a way to get meat-loving Americans to eat the bland, mushy soy product.”

The initial result of his research is called a Tofette, which is beginning to make its way into stores in flavors such as teriyaki, barbecue, and Jamaican jerked.

Kong tells the Globe that he solved the taste and consistency problems by “combining traditional methods of tofu production, which is similar to making cheese, with modern technology. The process begins with whole soybeans that are soaked overnight, then ground to extract soy milk. The milk is curdled, and the curds used to make tofu.

“To achieve a meat-like texture, Kong uses a press that employs precise heat and pressure, established through a lengthy process of trial and error. The tofu, cut into small pieces, is then briefly fried in vegetable oil.”
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