Smoked things have always tasted like meat to me. The epitome of rich, salty, umami perfection, smoked foods satiate a hunger in me that I can’t quite explain. I first had this revelation in beer tasting class at UNISG months ago, and have since developed a fondness and appreciation for smoked cheeses, various fish, and even vegetables! Smoked beer, in particular, has a way of making you feel like you’ve just eaten a steak – if you think Guinness is a meal, try a Rauchbier! This wonderment became evident to me when a friend introduced me to smoked tofu. I am by no means a vegetarian, but am happy to try new takes on meat free protein, especially a challenge that might turn me on to tofu. Apprehensive, I unwrapped the block of dense, brown soy and sliced a piece to try. Like all other smoked things before it, this strange creation changed my perception regarding its main ingredient. Smoked tofu is more like a cheese to me, perfectly seasoned and of a texture not too grainy. It pairs well with roasted or pan-sautéed vegetables and contrasts nicely with balsamic vinegar to add a little sweetness. This type of tofu is firm, unlike some of the watery versions I have hated in the past, and this curdled soy certainly tricked my taste buds, just like many smoked edibles before it!