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This may be a very basic question and I've just somehow not been doing it properly.

When I get tofu in the prepared foods department or the Chinese buffet, it's prepared in cubes that seem to have been marinated and then cooked in some way that makes it... not "crispy" as I see a lot of advice about online, but more of an al dente sort of firmness or chewiness?

When people talk about crispy tofu, is this the consistency they're talking about? The "chewy" texture my favorite style of tofu, but I've never been able to replicate it following the usual crispy-tofu directions, and am not sure how else to describe it.

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    I worked in the deli at a health food store for a while. The tofu that we got in bulk was marked "extra firm" but was MUCH firmer than retail tofu marked "extra firm". – SourDoh Feb 20 '14 at 23:00
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Often they'll freeze the tofu before cooking it to give it a much meatier texture. That may be what you're describing.

"Crispy" tofu I usually think of as quite literally fried tofu.

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Do you have a picture of this dish?

From what you've said, sounds like extra firm tofu to me. You can buy this in stores. It comes premarinated in a soy sauce based marinade

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