How to better use ChinEAT Sichuan Pepper grains (red and green)? Try this Chinese recipe out!
Mapo Tofu 麻婆豆腐 [mápódòufǔ] is one of the Sichuanese recipes that you have to cook at home at least once. It is not just a matter of preparing a great Sichuanese classic that is going to reward your taste buds forever, it is also a great food preparation that is going to let you learn a lot about Chinese cooking techniques and seasonings. Mapo Tofu is considered at the soul of Chinese cuisine, and it is a 100+ years old recipe that brings bold Sichuan straight to your kitchens. The combination of chilies (buy some Erjingtiao for the best result), Sichuan peppercorns, douchi (fermented black beans) and doubanjiang (fermented broad bean chili paste) bring the umami sensations to the next level.
•Tofu (soft or firm) (500g)
•Salt (3g for blanching the tofu + extra pinch during the cooking)
•Water (200ml) + enough to soak the fermented black beans
•Doubanjiang – Fermented broad bean chili paste (2tbsp)
•Douchi - Fermented black beans (1tbsp)
•Minced pork (80g)
•Minced ginger (30g)
•Minced garlic (30g)
•Minced green onions (30g)
•Minced celery (15g)
•Rapeseed oil (3-4 tbsp)
•Peanut oil (3 tbsp for the chili on cleaver preparation)
•Starch slurry - starch + water (20g of starch + 100 of water)
•Sugar (2 tbsp)
•ChinEAT Red Sichuan Peppercorns (5g)
•Shaoxing wine (2 tbsp)
•Soy sauce light (2 tbsp)
•Soy sauce dark (1 tbsp) (optional for a darker color)
 Take the fermented black beans and soak them into some water for a while.
 Take the fermented black beans out of the water and drain them.
 Chop them finely together with the doubanjiang. Set aside this chili paste.
 Take the garlic, ginger, green onions and celery and chop finely. Set aside in
 Take some water and mix it with some starch to obtain the starch slurry. Set aside.
 Pour some vegetable oil into a preheated wok, turn to medium heat and add
the Sichuan peppercorns with the chilies. Turn to low heat, give it a good stir for a
minute and take them out, filtering the excess oil. Be careful not to burn them, it may cause
the dish to get bitter.
 Use a mortar to crush everything into a rough consistency and put aside. If you like, do this with
cleavers. *If you want to skip this process, make sure you get some good chili flakes and mix them with
some grounded Sichuan peppercorns.
 Drain the water from the tofu, then cut it into cubes (2 cm or even bigger if you like).
 Place the tofu into a pot with cold water (enough to cover it) and a pinch of salt, turn on the heat, and
wait for it to boil. Remove it after a quick blanch and cool down in cold water.
 Rapeseed oil into a pre-heated wok, turn to medium heat and pour in minced pork.
After placing the meat inside the wok, let it cook for a while, then start stirring it. *switch this with
mushrooms for vegetarian options.
 Once the meat has cooked through, get the doubanjiang and black bean paste inside. Stir it to obtain a nice and bright red color.
 Go ahead and pour in the chopped garlic, onions, and ginger. Give it a good stir fry until all fragrances start coming out.
 Time to pour in the chili flakes with grounded Sichuan peppercorns, or our prepared roasted mix, the so called "daokou lajiao", literally the chilies on cleaver.
 Give it a good mix and let's go ahead with the seasoning: shaoxing wine and soy sauce (light and dark).
 Cover it with water and bring it to a boil. Add some sugar, salt it if needed (a pinch of salt or/and more light soy sauce) and add some grounded Sichuan peppercorns for an extra tingling flavor.
 Add the tofu inside.
 Let it simmer for 5 minutes, then time to reduce the sauce with our starch slurry.
 Now here the trick is to divide this step into three times (first at high heat, then medium heat, then the
last one after turning off the heat).
 Here you are, welcome to Sichuan. Garnish it with the celery if you like some color and do not forget the
final sprinkle of grounded Sichuan peppercorns (or in powder).
Your Mapo Tofu is ready! Enjoy your meal and write us a comment if you like it!
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