6 pieces freeze-dried tofu
6 whole cabbage leaves
Pinch sea salt
Marinade for Simmering Tofu:
1 cup water
1 1/3 tablespoons shoyu or tamari
1 tablespoon mirin
3 thin slices peeled fresh ginger root (optional)
Marinade for Simmering Stuffed Cabbage:
2/3 cup water
2 teaspoons shoyu or tamari
1 bay leaf
Reconstitute dried tofu by soaking in lukewarm water 5 minutes. Repeatedly dampen and squeeze out excess water until liquid that comes out is no longer milky. Press cakes fairly dry and place in saucepan or skillet with water, shoyu or tamari, mirin, and ginger (if using). Simmer, loosely covered, until most liquid is absorbed (15 to 20 minutes). Be careful not to scorch tofu.
In a large pot, bring 2 inches of water to boil. Add salt and cabbage leaves. Parboil 5 minutes. Remove leaves, cool immediately under running water or in a cold-water bath, and drain. If central ribs are stiff, cut them out. Cut each piece of tofu in half. Stack two halves in the center of each cabbage leaf. Neatly wrap (as you would a package) and fasten with toothpicks. Combine last four ingredients in medium-sized skillet, add cabbage parcels, cover, and simmer 20 minutes. Serve hot.