Tofu Polichathu|Kerala Style Tofu Cooked in Banana Leaf

Tofu Polichathu:
There was a contest in one of the facebook groups called “Roasts and Grinds” and the winning recipes will be the guest posts of my blog in the coming weeks. We had called for healthy recipes with tofu/mushroom/soya and healthy baking recipes. I have already posted the recipe of tofu bhurji. The below recipe of “Tofu Polichathu” is from Mrs Gayathry Shivaji.I have not edited any of her content. The recipe looked so healthy, easy and very innovative to me. Thank you so much for the recipe and your participation.
I have been inviting guest posts to my blog after publishing 100 recipes to honour all friends and supporters. So here is my personal invite to each of you out there“I invite pure vegetarian recipes with mushrooms/soya chunks /tofuor any healthy baked goodie or any of your family’s traditional recipe. Whoever is interested, please write to me at with ingredients, detailed recipe and step by step images(at-least two to three final images). I will be happy and honoured to post the same on my blog. ”

Is tofu Safe?

Few of my friends had huge doubts about consumption of TOFU. Few were even questioning “Why does a healthy blogger like you advocate Tofu Usage?”. Very honestly I am not promoting usage of tofu daily. Please read through this to know about tofu completely. Tofu is basically from soy milk and is said to be an alternative to cows milk. It is similar to paneer or cottage cheese. It is a rich source of proteins and fibers. It is heart friendly as it reduces LDL cholesterol. It is said to reduce the chances of cancer , diabetes and improves bone health. It is nutrient dense. After a lot of reading all that I would conclude about tofu consumption is It is safe it is not processed/genetically modified and moderately used. And all the controversies or cons of soy is only with the genetically modified and processed soy products. Natural soy bean as such or unprocessed tofu will do no harm.It can be a rare ingredient. For example both of the guest posts recipe creators would have used tofu only when I had called for the contest in this year and I had used it only once in all 5 years(29 years) in my tofu burji recipe. So moderation is the key. Every food has its own pros and cons.Do what suits your body the best . Prefer organic soy products to stay safe. If you have soy allergy please avoid tofu.  The presence of  isoflavones, a naturally occurring plant compound that is present is all forms of soy, including organic soy, which is a type of phytoestrogen is the major reason behind all controversies .But this compound is also found in many of our daily staples like legumes.These are based on the experts/scientists/researchers views.So “Moderation is the key” with such type of ingredients if you doubt the usage. This tofu is not recommended for babies/people with Soy protein allergy and people who are suffering from thyroid and breast cancer. You can replicate the same recipe with paneer if you fear the usage of tofu. Hope this helps.

Over to her.

Tofu Polichathu:
This was inspired from the famous Kerala based dish meen polichathu. I sort of starting to cook seriously.I am a meat eater, I have always preferred non-veg over veg! So when the challenge was posted by Kalyani, to make dishes with tofu, and purely vegetarian which is also healthy, I wanted to try my favourite non-veg dishes to be a purely veg 🙂.. and tofu is my to go protein and easy ingredient to cook! I am very thankful for roast and grind family and Kalyani to come up with this idea!🙂

tofu polichathu
Ingredients :
  • Firm tofu – 1 slice /200 gms
  • Small onions -15 no’s
  • Tomato- 1 no, chopped nicely
  • Ginger garlic paste- 1 tablespoon
  • Chilli powder – 1 to 1.5 teaspoon ( I used Kashmiri chilly)
  • Coriander powder- 1 teaspoon m
  • Fennel powder-1/2 teaspoon
  • Turmeric- 1 to 2 inches
  • Salt – as per taste
  • Chopped green chilly – 1 no( finely chopped)
  • Coconut milk- 2 tablespoon
  • Mustard, urad dal, curry leaves – tempering
  • Coconut oil – 3 tablespoon
  • Banana leaves – cleaned

tofu polichathu


1.Measure and keep all the ingredients ready.

2. Cut the tofu slab as slices of your required thickness. Poke it will fork gently.  Marinate it with some salt and chilly powder for 30 mins.
Tofu Polichathu
3.Masala preparation
In a pan, pour oil and temper mustard and urad dal and add the following in the order
Curry leaves
Small onion
Ginger garlic paste
Tomato chunks
Green chillies
4. Sauté well and then add the powders. Mix them well and sprinkle some water. Let the content get mashed up nicely. Cook until the raw smell goes off and then add two tablespoons of coconut milk or cream. Keep in flame for a minute and switch off. Let it cool down.
Tofu Polichathu
5.Fry the tofu slice in a oil and set aside.
6. Now take the clean banana leaf and show them on the Low Flame. This will soften the banana leaf and will not break while wrapping.
Tofu Polichathu
7. Place the banana leaf, the glossy side on top, take a part of masala and make a bed of it. Then keep the tofu slice above the masala.
8. Cover the tofu slice again with the masala and make a pocket. Wrap the banana leaf with the thread.
9. This can be steamed or kept in lightly oil smeared tawa in low flame.
10.Let it rest for five to ten minutes until you smell the leaf cooking.
Tofu Polichathu
11. Switch off and once it cooled down, serve.
tofu polichathu

Notes:Skip the salt for babies less than one year.Please check for Soy Allergy before including tofu in your food.

Always have a word with your paediatrician before offering any new food to your babies.

Please consider the family history of allergies before trying any new food. (Soy Allergy)

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tofu polichathu

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