Updated: Aug 26
Mandarin: Dou Fu
Cantonese: Dau Foo
I don't think many people like tofu. Don't you?
Tofu - made from soy beans, tofu (also commonly known as bean curd) is one of China's major contributions to the world as a cheap source of protein. Highly nutritious and low in fat and sugar, it is a much healthier food than either meat or fish, at a fraction of the cost. Also, it is perfect for vegans and vegetarians.
Types of tofu
There are two basic types of fresh tofu widely available. Soft or silken tofu and a firm tofu.
Silken tofu, also known as Japanese-style tofu, is silky, creamy and has the highest water content.
Firm tofu is the most widely available in supermarkets. Firm tofu is quite compact and is often packaged soaked in liquid – the amount depends on the type of packaging.
Smoked tofu, this tofu is extra-firm and has a smoky flavour. You can use for pan-fry or stir-fry, but it is best eaten raw, such as in a winter stew or a summer salad.
Tofu skin, tofu puffs, fried tofu, tofu pocket... too many.
These tofu products can be found in Asian supermarkets.
Braised Tofu With Mushrooms
1 pack (350g) tofu
1 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp light soy sauce
1 tsp oyster sauce (without for vegan/vegetarian option)
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp Chinese cooking wine or dry sherry
1/2 cup vegetable stock (if you use dried mushrooms, then use the soaked liquid instead)
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 tsp grated fresh ginger
1 cup Fresh or dried mushrooms (mushrooms of your choice), stalks removed (soak dried mushrooms in hot water until soft, reserve the liquid for use as stock). Cut them to thick slices.
1 tsp cornflour (cornstarch) with 3 tbsp cold water, mixed in and set a side (don't add hot water to cornflour, they will go lumps!)
Salt and white pepper (or black pepper) to taste
1 spring onion, shredded, for garnish
- Put the tofu in a plate and dry with kitchen towel. Add sesame oil, light soy sauce and a large pinch of pepper. Leave to marinate for 10 minutes, then drain and cut into bite size cubes.
- Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium high heat. Add the tofu cubes. Cook until golden brown all the way through. Set a side.
- Add another tablespoon of oil to the same frying pan. Stir in the garlic and ginger for a few seconds. Then add all the mushrooms and stir-fry for a couple of minutes.
- Stir in the tofu and mix well with the mushrooms. Add cooking wine, soy sauce and stock. Simmer for 2 minutes.
- Turn the heat to high, then add the cornflour mixture. Gently to coat thoroughly and simmer for a couple of minutes until the sauce thickened.
- Garnish with shredded spring onion. Serve with hot steamed rice. Enjoy!