The Tofu Festival

August 19, 2007 at 10:10 pm in Events

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I went to the Tofu Festival today. This is what I saw.

(Warning, lots of pics ahead)

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It was a bit confusing getting to the event as a bunch of streets were oddly closed off, even some that were far away from the event. Found some street parking and just started following the crowd. There was still more walking to go as the festival was surrounded by this black fence. Boo, hiss, I hate feeling trapped inside or outside of street fairs.

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With the coupon admission was $3, which gives you access to pay for food inside. Free is cheaper.

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A legal disclaimer about being photographed and video taped.

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Scrip = “a certificate to be exchanged for goods, as at a company store.” I had to look that up.

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Ah, here’s where I can purchase those precious scrips. Hey wait a minute, these are just plain old tickets! Tofu festival, you are just too smart.

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It’s all about the tofu! It looks like this was strictly a one brand tofu affair, my beloved Visoy was nowhere to be seen.

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This was informative: a display on the tofu making process.

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Lots of people showed up. In some spots it turned into pedestrian gridlock.

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Orange pineapple tofu, very nicely done. Only one dollar, err, I mean scrip.

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Booth for the wifi scavenger hunt. I didn’t participate since my 486 was starting to crash, must have been the heat. And carrying a monitor made it difficult to take pictures. Oh well, next time.

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Tofu cheesecake. No, that’s not just a slice of raw tofu. Yes, it was good. It might seem odd but blended tofu can be turned into all kinds of good desserts. Check out The Farm cookbook for some recipes.

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Now that’s a cool block of tofu, sporting the shades, pointing finger ready to signify “the tofu block acknowledges your presence.” It’s even picked up a sweet cookie!

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There were no sitting places for eating or to just get away from the sun, at least not that I noticed. And since they fenced everyone in, you couldn’t even sit on the sidewalk. The only escape were these empty booths that people crammed into for a respite.

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When good ideas go bad: Introducing the Tofu Margarita! It tastes exactly how you would imagine.

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Free Tongue Diagnosis. I didn’t want to find out what they thought of mine.

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Lots of tofu and Asian themed t-shirts were available. I heard someone cracking up at the “Secret Asian Man” design.

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There didn’t seem to be as many food choices as I remember from the last time I was at the tofu festival. But there were still some unique items, like this tostada..

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..which I expected to be terrible but turned out to be quite acceptable, since it was done in a lime based ceviche style. Not bad, assuming you want tofu on a tostada.

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The event was divided into two sections. You needed a “TOFU” hand stamp from this guy if you wanted to re-enter.

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Long lines on the other side as well.

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I didn’t see the tofu robot, must have been out on a superhero mission.

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This was certainly not tofu.

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Nor was this oddity: water marketed to women. The design and name somehow made me think of Kotex, and the association was confirmed when I picked up the marketing info. Check out the website and the suggestive bikini on the bottle. That is one stupid product, cursed be anyone that sells and buys themed water. Uh, I guess that applies to me as well. Shit, I hope I don’t get pregnant.

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Long line for the Starbucks samples. Didn’t bother to find out if they put tofu in the coffee.

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This was fun, watching people line up to get their picture taken with a giant inflatable tofu pack.

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“Tofu and I go way back.”

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“Wait til’ my parents see me at the wild tofu parties!”

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“Sir, you’d best behave yourself around that young block of tofu, we’re watching you.”

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I had wanted to try the Okonomi-Yaki earlier but the line was too long. Coming back later it was even longer!

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Might as well wait it out. Headed towards the orange banners.

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10 minutes later and we have food! It was a tasty mix of tofu, edamame, and onions in an egg batter, worth the wait. The food lines were a bit disorganized though, a few people were cutting as there was no clear line. And this line was blocking access to the food booth next door, I bet those vendors weren’t happy about that.

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Guarding the tofu steaks. Nah, they’re just taking a break.

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When you’ve “expanded your imagination” so wide that you’re creating tofu & cheese omelets and tofu quesadillas, you’ve basically gone off the deep end. Reel it in.

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There was going to be a parade later on in the evening, people were already staking out some seats.

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Someone didn’t see this sign..

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..until it was too late. Ha, the old pay-me-now-before-I-tow-it fleecing. I empathize with you lady across the street, a few months ago this bastard did the same thing to me! Even though I got to my car before they had clamped it, he proceeded to take possession of it so as to require payment. These revenue generating scams by the city and their agents are just fucked up. What a shitty job, to wake with the certitude that your gonna make a bunch of people miserable.

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And just then, this sight comes out of an alley. Preparing for the parade, no doubt.

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I couldn’t stick around for the parade though. These guys, skipping along and swinging their clasped hands to the chant of “swing-swing-swing” also seemed headed out. Perfect time for me to say goodbye. Goodbye.

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