I was up for a cooking project on the Easter weekend, and the Serious Eats website was a good place to find one. Their columnist J. Kenji López-Alt is quite the experimentalist, and concentrates on vegan recipes for a month each year. He's inspired us to make icecream, soup and deep-fried cauliflower (and similarly driven our friend Stu to make and share a spectacular layered queso dip). All this is just a wind-up and justification for the title of this post: I tried putting tofu and rice in my waffle iron because Serious Eats said it was cool.
Both the article's comments and common sense told me that this could get messy, and it did. My waffle iron has a handle for making a 180° flip during cooking, and that was all my tofu needed to spill marinade everywhere. It's also got deep grooves, which are great for crispy high-surface-area waffles and getting batter stuck when the iron's not sufficiently greased... I should have paid more attention to that between batches.
Still, I managed to retrieve most of what I waffled with some careful spatula and fork work. Firm tofu ends up looking very waffley indeed, although the crisp outer didn't elevate the tofu beyond a good shallow-fry, in my opinion. The pre-cooked sushi rice was both more infuriating and more enlightening - it's tough get it out of the iron without the squished rice patty completely disintegrating, but the crunchy golden edges are chewy and caramelised, like the rice in the bottom of good bibimbap.
I garnished my waffled lunch with a slosh of kecap manis, a shake of shichimi togarashi and some steamed beans dressed in the leftover tofu miso marinade. I'm not sure if I'll waffle tofu or rice again but it was a worthy project for a nothing-to-do day where I was free to play around, make a mess, swear a bunch and eventually eat at my leisure.