Start by preparing the tofu.Preheat the oven to 350 F/ 180 C/ gas mark 4. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.Drain then press the tofu to remove excess water, then wrap your tofu in paper towel and give another squeeze (you may have to use a few paper towel sheets to get rid of all excess moisture). This will allow the tofu to better absorb the flavours and hold its shape well (it will become extra firm).
Crumble the tofu with your fingers into a bowl (not too finely). In another bowl combine all the tofu marinade ingredients and stir until smooth. Pour this mixture over the tofu and stir gently until evenly coated.
Spread the tofu in a single layer over the baking sheet and bake in the centre of the oven for 30 minutes. While the tofu is in the oven make the sauce (so it’s ready when the tofu comes out of the oven and you can stir it into the sauce right away).
To make the sauce in a large pan heat the oil, add the bay leaf, onion, garlic, celery and carrot and cook over a medium heat for 6-7 minutes until softened stirring frequently. Add the wine and cook for another minute.
Add the tomatoes, tomato puree, balsamic vinegar, oregano, onion granules, salt and a good grind of pepper, stir, cover and bring to the boil then simmer for 15 minutes stirring occasionally.
Remove the sauce from the heat and adjust the seasoning if needed. (Keep covered until you are ready to add the tofu).Gently stir in the tofu (once ready), scatter freshly chopped basil and serve immediately.
Try not to crumble the tofu too finely (see photos) - it should resemble clusters of cooked ground meat.
To save time prepare the vegetables and make the sauce while the tofu is in the oven.
Boil the pasta while the sauce is bubbling away. You will need approx. 400 g raw pasta (for 4 people).
It is important to stir the tofu into the sauce after you’ve removed the sauce from the heat (to preserve all of its delicious flavour). For best results serve immediately.