Ma Po Tofu

This is one of  my love-at -first- try recipes.   I was looking for some tokwa ( it’s how we call tofu in Filipino) recipes to try and found out about Ma Po tofu.  I have browsed through many recipes and the one below is what appealed to me. It’s fairly easy and the result is of course delicious!   The ingredients can be easily found in any supermarkets except for the Sichuan peppercorn powder, so I just used ground white pepper.

Ready-made mapo tofu sauce in packets is also available in the groceries; I have tried it once just for comparison; taste-wise, they’re close because it’s from the same manufacturer, just a little salty in my opinion so I adjusted it by adding water and then thickened it with slurry (cornstarch-water mixture).   Making your own sauce from scratch is yummier and cheaper and just as easy, so I suggest you just buy a jar of chili bean paste like I did. :)

It’s the first time I bought and tried chili bean paste and I like it a LOT. Only a little of this is needed for the sauce and some other ingredients to make a delicious mapo tofu, so a jar of chilli bean paste can go a long, long way; I might have to look for other recipes to use it for.  

mapo_tofu

yum-yum!

MA PO TOFU

serves 4-5 persons

I adjusted the amount of the sauce to make more because my family and I love sauce :) .. you can find the original recipe here

For sauce
1/2 cup chicken broth
3 tablespoons chilli bean paste
3 tablespoons soy sauce
salt to taste

10-12 ounces tokwa ( regular or soft (not silken) tofu),  drained and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons corn, peanut, or canola oil
1/2 lb (8 ounces) ( 250 g)  ground pork
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon finely minced garlic
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon finely minced peeled fresh ginger
1 tablespoon cornstarch dissolved in 2 tablespoons water
1 1/2 teaspoons  sesame oil
1/2 to 1 teaspoon toasted Sichuan-peppercorn powder ( I used ground white pepper)
3 tablespoons thinly sliced scallion

Make sauce:
Stir together broth, bean paste, soy sauce, and kosher salt. Set aside.

Poach tofu:
Slide tofu into a saucepan of simmering water and keep at a bare simmer while stir-frying rest of dish.

Stir-fry pork:
Heat a wok or large heavy skillet over high heat until hot and add 1 1/2 tablespoons corn oil, swirling to coat. Add pork and stir-fry, breaking up lumps and adding remaining 1/2 tablespoon corn oil if meat sticks, until no longer pink. Add garlic and ginger and stir-fry over moderate heat until very fragrant, about 2 minutes.

Finish stir-fry:
Stir reserved sauce, then add to pork and bring to a simmer. Drain tofu in a large sieve and slide into sauce, stirring gently.

Stir cornstarch mixture and add to stir-fry. Bring to a boil, stirring gently, and cook until thickened and glossy, about 15 seconds.

Turn off heat and sprinkle with sesame oil, Sichuan-peppercorn powder to taste, and 2 tablespoons scallion. Stir once or twice, then serve sprinkled with remaining tablespoon scallion

Thanks for dropping by…happy weekend!! :) ♥

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