16 oz firm/extra firm tofu, frozen in package
salt and pepper mixture, 2 tsp each
1/4 cup cornstarch + 1/3 cup unsweetened plant milk, slurry in large bowl
Remove plastic covering from frozen tofu block. Then thaw tofu by letting it sit in hot water or microwaving it for 5 minutes until completely thawed. If microwaving, move the tofu onto a plate to microwave once the water has melted.
Wrap tofu blocks in absorbent towel. Using heavy weights (heavy pan, cutting board + books, etc), press the tofu for ~10 minutes.
Unwrap tofu and slice in half horizontally. Lay tofu pieces on long side and slice down the middle to create thinner slices of tofu (splitting it down the middle). Repeat for all tofu blocks. You should have. At the end, you should have 8 slices of tofu total.
Sprinkle salt and pepper onto both sides of each tofu slice.
Set up 3 large bowls to bread the tofu. The bowls will go in this order: (1) Cornstarch + garlic powder (2) Cornstarch-milk slurry (3) Panko + salt
In a pan, add oil for frying, filling it ~1/4 inch high. Add ~1/2 tbsp of cornstarch to oil and mix (this will help with splatter). Heat oil to 360F (or until you stick a wooden chopstick in and bubbles form at the tip).
Coat tofu slice in bowl (1), dredge the tofu in bowl (2), cover the tofu with panko in bowl (3). Then repeat bowls (2) and (3) again to double-bread the tofu slice. (Basically go in this order: 1-2-3-2-3). Note: remember to occasionally stir the cornstarch slurry (2) so that the cornstarch doesn't pool to the bottom.
Place 2-3 tofu slices in pan and fry each side until they're golden brown (2-3 minutes each side). If the breadcrumbs are burning, lower the heat. Remove and place on cooling rack or paper towels.
Repeat until all tofu is fried.
package of hamburger buns
vegan cheese slices (we used Violife)
katsu sauce or teriyaki sauce
any other toppings you'd like
Add vegan mayonnaise to bread slices. Then add tofu katsu.
Drizzle katsu sauce on top of tofu slice. Then add vegan cheese. You can melt the cheese by heating the katsu in a pan on the stove on medium-low heat, or you can microwave it. We used a blowtorch.
Finish with cabbage and any other toppings you'd like. Makes 8 burgers.