Ma-Po Tofu

This fiery Sichuan classic is named for the pockmarked (po) wife (ma) who supposedly invented it at her husband's restaurant.

Total Time:
35 min
Prep:
15 min
Cook:
20 min

Yield:
3 to 4 servings
Level:
Easy

CATEGORIES
Ingredients
  • Sauce:
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons hot bean paste
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 pound 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 pound ground pork shoulder (preferably 75 percent lean)
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon finely minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon finely minced peeled ginger
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch dissolved in 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Japanese sesame oil
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon toasted sansho powder
  • 3 tablespoons thinly sliced scallions
  • Accompaniment: steamed rice
Directions

To make the sauce: Stir together broth, bean paste, soy sauce, and kosher salt. Set aside.

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

To stir-fry the 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.

To finish the 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, sansho powder, to taste, and 2 tablespoons scallion. Stir once or twice, then serve sprinkled with remaining tablespoon scallion.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
Loading review filters...
BROWSE REVIEWS BY KEYWORD
    Flag as inappropriate

    Thank you! your flag was submitted.

    Not what you're looking for? Try:

    Tofu Ranchero