Norah's Cooking Diary

Mapo Tofu (麻婆豆腐)

Added by: Norah   Added on: July 25, 2020

## Season 4, Episode 9 ##

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Hi everyone. In this video I am going to share with you a Mapo Tofu (麻婆豆腐) recipe.

Silky soft tofu with minced beef in a rich and flavorful chili bean sauce taste amazingly delicious. The hint of hot and spicy makes this a perfect meal for that cold night.

Mapo Tofu is a popular Chinese dish from Sichuan province. This dish is easy to prepare without special technique using tofu and minced meat as the main ingredients.

Happy cooking 😉

Several notes here to share with you:

  • You could substitute beef mince with other minced meat that you prefer. Substitute beef stock with chicken stock if other minced meat is used.

  • You could substitute dried chili with dried chili flakes or dried chili powder if you prefer a more intense heat.

  • You could substitute brown sugar with white sugar.

  • You could substitute corn starch with potato flour.

Here is a quick rundown of the recipe:

Ingredients for Mapo Tofu

(Serves 3-4 peoples)

  • 600 g Silken Tofu

  • 200 G Beef Mince

  • 1 Tsp Green Sichuan Peppercorns

  • 2 Tbsp Sichuan Chilli Douban Sauce

  • 1 Tbsp Sweet Yellow Bean Paste

  • 1 Tbsp Salted Black Bean, rinsed

  • 1 Whole Dried Chili

  • 3 Stalks Spring Onions

  • 1 Bulb Garlic, peeled

  • ±15 g Ginger, peeled

  • 1½ Tbsp Brown Sugar

  • 1½ Tbsp Lemon Juice

  • 250ml Beef Stock

  • 1½ Tbsp Corn Starch

  • 75 ml Cooking Oil

Method of Preparation

  1. Roast the peppercorns until they turn golden in color. Transfer the roasted peppercorns to the mortar. Coarsely ground the peppercorns. This peppercorn has a lemony fresh floral fragrance! Only a small amount of Green Sichuan peppercorn is needed as it has a more intense numbing taste compared with red Sichuan peppercorn. Transfer the grounded peppercorns into a bowl and set them aside until needed.

  2. Add Sichuan Chilli Douban Sauce, sweet yellow bean paste, brown sugar, and lemon juice to a bowl. Stir the mixture together to combine well and keep the bowl aside.

    Cut the dried chili into pieces (1.5cm long). Keep the flesh aside and discard the seeds.

    Chop the ginger and the garlic into a fine mince then set them aside.

    Choose spring onions with a larger stalk. Cut the spring onions into sections (about 2cm long) and then keep them aside.

  3. Line the chopping board with a baking paper. Spread the salted black bean onto the baking paper. The salted black beans should be rinsed to remove the excess salt before they are used in cooking. Coarsely chop the black beans over baking paper for easy removal. The chopping board is also less messy. Keep the chopped black beans on the baking paper aside until needed.

    Line the chopping board with another piece of baking paper. Arrange the silken tofu blocks onto the baking paper. Cut each of the tofu block into 12 smaller cubes.

  4. Bring 1 litre of water to a boil over MEDIUM heat, then switch the heat to LOW. Carefully transfer the cut tofu into the pot. Simmer the silken tofu over the LOWEST heat for about 5 mins so that the tofu will become firmer.

    After 5 mins, the tofu should now be firmer. Keep the tofu in the strainer aside until needed. Discard the boiling water.

  5. Add about 15ml of the cooking oil into the pan. Keep the remaining aside for now. Stir fry the dried chili over LOW heat until they turn dark red in colour. Transfer the stir fry dried chili into a bowl and set them aside for now.

    Heat up the pan over HIGH heat until it is smoky hot. Stir fry the spring onions until they are slightly charred but still retain their crisp and color. Typically about 30 secs. Transfer the stir fry spring onions into a bowl and set them aside for now.

  6. Reduce heat to LOW and add the remaining cooking oil to the pan. Add the minced garlic and ginger prepared earlier to the pan. Stir fry the minced garlic and ginger over MEDIUM heat until they turn golden in color. Typically about 2 mins.

    After 2 mins, add the sauce mixture and chopped salted black bean prepared earlier to the pan. Stir fry the mixture together for another 2 mins or until they are slightly dry.

    After 2 mins, the mixture should now be slightly dry. Add the beef mince to the pan. Stir fry the beef mince with the mixture together for about 3 mins to mix thoroughly. Stir frying the beef mince with the mixture this way will allow the minced meat to soak up the flavors.

    After 3 mins, add corn starch to the pan. Continue to stir fry the beef mince for about 1 min to mix well. Stir frying the beef mince mixture together with corn starch allows a layer of residue to stick onto the pan. This will enhance the sauce later.

    After 1 min, add beef stock to the pan. Stir the mixture and scrape the pan to dissolve the sticky residue at the bottom. The dissolved residue will deepen the flavor of the sauce.

    Carefully add the boiled silken tofu set aside earlier to the pan. Gently coat the tofu with the beef mince gravy. Do not stir. Stirring will cause the tofu to break into smaller pieces. Add the dried chili and spring onions set aside earlier to the pan. Gently mix the mixture until the gravy is slightly thickened. Typically about 1 to 2 mins.

  7. Transfer the tofu to a serving dish. Sprinkle the grounded Sichuan peppercorns prepared earlier over the dish. Serve the Mapo Tofu immediately while it is still hot.

Happy cooking 😉🧡

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