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No to GMO? A top chef is teaching New Yorkers how to make their own tofu

making tofu

With all the talk about how hard it is to find non-GMO soy products, it’s surprisingly easy to make tofu yourself. But before we declare a full-on DIY tofu-making movement, New Yorkers have to get over their stage fright.

“It’s really easy, and requires just a few ingredients,” affirms Peter Berley, who’s the former executive chef of Angelica Kitchen in New York City, and author of The Flexitarian Table. So there’s no reason to be nervous.

Not convinced? On Saturday, April 14 and Sunday, April 15, the sustainable chef and cooking instructor, will show you just how simple it is, when he leads an enthralling veggie protein-making workshop (yes, we called it enthralling) in his very own domestic teaching kitchen in South Jamesport, on the North Fork. (We’re smitten with it and its massive tile-adorned wood-fired oven, per the video, below.)

Part cooking, part eating—and part savoring New York State wines—the tofu-making intensive will teach you how to make both silken and firm-pressed tofu, plus seitan and tempeh. (Hint: you can ferment white and black beans instead of just soybeans, too.)

Cheese also gets some love, whether it’s tucking homemade ricotta into wild mushroom cannelloni (“just heat up raw milk and add lemon juice or vinegar and you have curds and whey,” he says) or nestling Indian-style paneer beside spicy spinach in chickpea crepes.

Another bonus: the stone ground wheat and raw milk used in the sessions is fresh, plucked from the area’s bounty of farms, some of which you’ll also get to visit.

If you can’t make the jitney trip out to the East End, Berley encourages you to start experimenting with these vegetable proteins in your own kitchen. Try his easy recipe for firm tofu here. —Alia Akkam

To attend the workshop ($275) on Saturday, April 14 (2:00–8:00) and Sunday, April 15 (9:00–3:00) or for more details, contact [email protected] or visit