This is the best I’ve ever had! And smells divine!
This dish is popular in China and Japan. Spicy and warm with the smoothness of tofu.
1 box silken-firm tofu
1/2 C beef-style crumbles (or TVP bits, slightly moistened)
3 Tbsp sesame oil
1 chili pepper, minced (or 3 Tbsp mild chili powder)
1 small onion, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tbsp soy sauce + 1 tsp sugar
2 Tbsp cornstarch + 1/2C water
green onions for garnish
If you don’t have silken, a regular tub of tofu is fine. Also reg oil is fine too, still yummy! Exactness is just for optimum results! Honestly, it’s just as good without the crumbles.
1. Carefully wrap tofu in a tea towel or paper towels to soak up the excess liquid. Set aside.
2. Heat oil on medium heat and add garlic, onions and chili pepper. Fry until onions are soft.
***NOTE: To regulate spiciness, use chili powder. Start step #2 with 1 Tbsp of chili powder. Add an additional 1 Tbsp for every step until spiciness is desired.***
3. Cut tofu into about 1 cm squares while waiting (about 48 squares)
4. Add vegetarian “beef” crumbles until it darkens a bit.
5. Add soy sauce and sugar mixture.
6. GENTLY add tofu. Silken tofu is very very delicate. Lightly push everything around to mix.
7. Cover and cook for 10 minutes on med-low heat.
8. Add cornstarch and water mixture. Gently stir, it will thicken immediately.
9. Taste, and add chili powder/hot sauce to your liking.
10. If you like, garnish with green onions and serve alone or with a side of rice.
If you are pressed for time or are lazy, you can buy a pre-made Mapo sauce pouch in varying spiciness at any Asian grocer. Usually vegan, but you always double check don’t you my beautiful readers? Just add your own tofu and crumbles!