Because soya beans are a good source of protein, but need such careful and prolonged preparation, products made from tofu have evolved that make them easier to use.
Tofu is soya bean curd. The beans are soaked and then ground to a paste. The soluble sugars and proteins are then washed out and gypsum is added to the liquid to precipitate the protein out as a white solid. It can be kept refrigerated in an air-tight container full of water for up to four days.
Tofu has little taste but absorbs the flavours of herbs and spices to produce excellent savoury meals.
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Texturised vegetable protein is manufactured by extracting protein from a range of plants, including soya, artificially fortifying it with a range of vitamins and minerals, and then reforming it into chunks. It is probably more healthy to eat the wide range of vegetables!
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