This is a traditional Chinese Tofu dish which many Asian people of all different nationalities enjoy. I love adding eggplant to this dish when they are in season but if not, tofu and mince will do just as good. Also as an alternative to pork, you can use chicken mince. If you love hot dishes and like a bit of a kick, you can add chili oil to this dish. A great meal to warm up with in winter!
400g of firm tofu, cut into 1cm cubes, cook 1 minute in boiling water, drain and set aside
300g pork mince
4 clove garlic (10g), chopped
knob of ginger (10g),chopped
2 spring onion (50g), chopped
4 Asian egg plant (200g), cut into 1/8 length
Mapo Tofu Mixture:
2 tsp Soy sauce (Japanese or light soy sauce)
4 tsp Chili Bean Sauce (Toban Djan) * see note
4 tsp Sweet bean paste (Tian Mian Jian) * see note
2tsp brown sugar
2 cup chicken stock, reduced salt
1/4 tsp Salt
1/8 tsp white pepper
1/8 tsp Sichuan pepper
2 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp potato / corn starch
- Mix soy sauce, chili bean paste (Toban Djan), sweet bean paste (Tian Mian Jian), mirin and sugar in a small ramekin and set aside.
- Place a wok on high heat and add 2 Tbsp of oil, cook eggplant for a couple of minutes. Remove from the wok and set aside.
- Place same wok on high heat and add 2 Tbsp of cooking oil, garlic, ginger and spring onion. Stir for a minute or until fragrance.
- Add pork mince and cook for a couple of minutes.
- Once the pork is almost cooked, add the mixed sauce and cook for another minute and add chicken stock, tofu and egg plant, bringing to the boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 4-5 minutes. Stir gently. Season with salt, white pepper, sichuan pepper.
- Add 1 tablespoon of water to potato starch and mix well. Turn the heat to high heat so that the sauce starts to bubble and add this to the wok and add sesame seed oil, stir gently and turn off the heat.
* Chili Bean sauce (Toban Djan) : This is one of the Chinese condiments that I personally use often. It is fermented soybean with chili, salt and wheat flour. Readily available in major supermarkets and Asian stores.
* Sweet Bean Paste (Tian Mian Jian) is a dark brown coloured Chinese condiment and made from wheat flour, salt, sugar and soy bean – it tastes very similar to miso but a lot sweeter. This is readily available in Asian Stores – but if you can’t find them, you can mix miso paste as a substitute.
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