Saturday, April 4, 2009

Mapo Tofu

I love Mapo tofu. The soft silky mildness of tofu with the fiery hot and spicy sauce is perfect. And there is just something comforting about holding a small bowl of fragrant jasmine rice in your hand and chopsticks in the other hand. Perhaps it's because my grandfather who used to live with us would eat small bowls of rice. There would be other bowls scattered on the table with stir fried vegetables, soups, and side dishes in them. I don't have many memories of my grandfather. He passed away when I was so young. But he was the only grandparent I knew/met until I finally met my mom's mom when I was in high school. Perhaps one of the reasons I love food and cooking for my family is that smells, flavors and different dishes bring back memories of childhood, comfort, family and friends. Maybe different smells, flavors and dishes will trigger happy memories for my children on day.


Mapo Tofu

1-2 packages of tofu - I prefer medium firmness but that's my preference
2 tablespoons oil
2 tablespoons black bean sauce
2-3 tablespoons red chili paste with garlic
1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
1 1/2 tablespoon dark soy sauce
4 garlic cloves peeled and chopped
2 teaspoons cornstarch mixed with 1/2 cup water

*some people add plum sauce and 1 cup of white wine. I don't but you can if you want*
Another thing- I usually do not add pork to this dish, I have seen recipes with ground pork and I don't like my mapo with pork. I did dice some pork that I was using for a stir fry for the girls and threw that in this time around. It didn't make the dish better.



Some ingredients, note the olive oil, a vegetable oil that withstands higher heat would be best for this dish. But there you go.
In a bowl mix the black bean sauce, red Chili paste, hoisin and dark soy sauce. Set it aside.





In a heated wok cook the garlic in oil and pork if you are using it. Rinse and drain the tofu, cut it into nice sized cubes while the meat is cooking.







Once meat is cooked or garlic is fragrant add the sauces and cook for a few minutes until fragrant. Add rice wine if using.







Add tofu and toss gently in the sauce.








Cook until heated through.








Serve with rice.









Mapo Tofu

1-2 packages of tofu - I prefer medium firmness but that's my preference
2 tablespoons oil
2 tablespoons black bean sauce
2-3 tablespoons red chili paste with garlic
1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
1 1/2 tablespoon dark soy sauce
4 garlic cloves peeled and chopped
2 teaspoons cornstarch mixed with 1/2 cup water

*some people add plum sauce and 1 cup of white wine. I don't but you can if you want*
Another thing- I usually do not add pork to this dish, I have seen recipes with ground pork and I don't like my mapo with pork. I did dice some pork that I was using for a stir fry for the girls and threw that in this time around. It didn't make the dish better.

In a bowl mix the black bean sauce, red Chili paste, hoisin and dark soy sauce. Set it aside.
In a heated wok cook the garlic in oil and pork if you are using it. Rinse and drain the tofu, cut it into nice sized cubes while the meat is cooking.
Once meat is cooked or garlic is fragrant add the sauces and cook for a few minutes until fragrant. Add rice wine if using.
Add tofu and toss gently in the sauce.
Cook until heated through.
Serve with rice.
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