Get a delicious, spicy Chinese meal without calling for take out. This dish, which features tofu and pork, takes only a few minutes to prepare.
Step 1: Combine broth, bean paste, soy sauce, and salt Combine the chicken broth, bean paste, soy sauce, and a dash of salt to taste in a small mixing bowl to make a sauce. Set aside.
Step 2: Poach tofu in a saucepan Heat a medium saucepan filled with water until it reaches a simmer. Reduce heat to low, and slide the tofu into the saucepan. Keep the water at a low simmer while continuing to make the rest of the dish.
TIP: Don't let the water reach a full, rolling boil. Boiling the tofu will give it a rubbery feel.
Step 3: Heat oil in wok Heat a wok or large skillet over high heat. Add 1 1/2 tablespoons corn, peanut, or canola oil to the wok, and swirl it around to coat the skillet.
Step 4: Add pork and cook Add the ground pork to the heated wok and cook until no longer pink. Break up clumps of meat as you're cooking. Add the remaining 1/2 tablespoon oil to the meat if it begins to stick to the wok.
Step 5: Add garlic and ginger; stir in sauce Add the garlic and ginger to the wok, and continue cooking for an additional two minutes. Stir in your reserved sauce, and return the mixture to a simmer.
TIP: Sprinkle garlic cloves with a dash of salt while mincing to keep them from sticking to your knife.
Step 6: Drain tofu and add to wok Drain the poached tofu using a sieve, and add it to the wok. Stir gently to combine.
Step 7: Dissolve cornstarch and add to wok Dissolve the cornstarch in 2 tablespoons water, add to the wok and bring to a boil. Stir gently. Cook until the mixture has thickened and become glossy -- about 15 seconds.
Step 8: Remove wok from heat Remove the wok or skillet from the heat, and sprinkle with sesame oil, Sichuan-peppercorn powder, and two tablespoons of scallions. Stir until the ingredients are combined. Sprinkle with the remaining scallions, and serve. Present with a bowl of steamed rice for a tasty Chinese meal that's sure to be a crowd pleaser.
FACT: Soybeans, which are used to make tofu, were first planted in Colonial America in 1765 in Savannah, Georgia.
You Will Need
1/4 c. chicken broth
2 tbsp. hot bean paste
2 tbsp. soy sauce
1 lb. regular or soft tofu
drained and cut into 1/2-in. cubes
2 tbsp. corn
or canola oil
1/2 lb. ground pork shoulder
1 tbsp. plus 1 tsp. finely minced garlic
1 tbsp. plus 1 tsp. finely minced peeled fresh ginger