At the market, you’ll find all forms of tofu: fresh, baked, fried, puffed, string, dried, and seasoned. My favorite form to pick up at the Asian market is fried tofu. Save yourself from cutting, pressing, and frying fresh tofu, and just pick up a package of fried tofu. Go ahead and join the legions of lazies.
Seitan is generally found in cans at Asian market. Oh, and there are lots of them - vegetarian abalone, vegetarian pork, vegetarian chicken, and vegetarian duck are just a few of the styles. They’re all a little different in taste and texture. I’ve found that I like the vegetarian chicken and the vegetarian duck. What I like the most is that a 10-ounce can currently costs $1.49 at my market - super cheap compared to buying White Wave at the natural food store.
The most entertaining section is the frozen food aisle. Amongst the more mundane veggie hot dogs and chicken nuggets, you’ll find packages of mock meats in the style and shape of fish, eel, shrimp, whole chickens, logs of ham, lobster, and just about anything you can imagine. (Vegetarian ear, anyone?) This is where I suggest open-minded experimentation, but be forewarned that some are weird.
There are some gems, though. My absolute, all-time favorite mock meat buy at the Asian market are the frozen packets of Citrus Spareribs from May Wah in NY. These soy-based nuggets don't look exactly like spare ribs (check the intro picture), but have an exceptionally chewy texture, making them more meat-like than most mock meats. The sauce is the best part, though. It’s spicy and sweet - similar to the sauce on general Tso’s chicken or sparerib bbq sauce. (Imagine that!) Slosh some water around the empty package to make use of all the sauce, add to your stir fry, and you’re golden.