1 (12- or 14-ounce) block extra firm tofu
Vegetable oil for frying
2 tablespoons tamarind pulp
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoons palm sugar or brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon sambal oelek (or more, to taste)
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cucumber, peeled and cut into chunks or slices
1 Granny Smith apple, cut into chunks or slices
1 cup jicama chunks or slices
1 cup pineapple chunks or slices
1/2 cup unsalted or lightly salted peanuts, crushed
Fry the tofu: Cut tofu into 1-inch cubes and gently press between clean kitchen towels or paper towels to absorb excess moisture. Add 1/2-inch oil to a skillet and heat over medium-high. Oil should be hot enough that a small piece of tofu sizzles but does not burn. Fry the tofu cubes in a single layer until crispy on all sides. This may need to be done in batches. Drain and cool on a towel-lined plate.
Make the dressing: Whisk together the tamarind, vinegar, sugar, sambal, and salt.
Assemble the salad: Toss the cooled tofu, cucumber, apple, jicama, pineapple, and half of the peanuts together in a large bowl and toss with the dressing.
Garnish with remaining peanuts and serve immediately.