The trip to Japantown in San Jose was originally prompted by this Mercury News article that San Jose Tofu Company, a 71-year-old 3rd generation tofu shop and one of the very few places that still make tofu by hand, was closing at the end of this month.
Like many food, machine-made have gradually replaced hand-made. For food, we benefit from those who provide their manual labor to give us items that taste better than machine-made. The Nozaki family is just physically exhausted having to haul tens of pounds of pails full of soy beans. And carrying those heavy pails of tofu with water to and from the fridge is not easy. I am grateful for what they provided all the years.
Perhaps because of the article, there were quite a few people lining up to get their tofu. I grabbed mine and the last tub of soy milk. They said they were out of the silken tofu dessert. I never tried their dessert before. But I can imagine handmade making a big difference in the silken tofu texture so I was a bit bummed.
The soy milk was unsweetened and tasted rich and soy-y. $1.50 for a large container around a quart. A steal. $2.25 for a big piece of tofu.
Come early and see what they have. They just happened to be filling the soy milk into the containers right when I started lining up. So the people who showed up 5 minutes before and immediately after me didn’t get any. So some of it is luck what they may have and when.
Any one tried their silken tofu dessert?
Their tofus are also carried in a few selected Japanese markets. I believe Suruki in San Mateo, and Nijiya carries them.
Okara, or soy pulp