ma po tofu
  1. if using beef or pork – mince add a pinch of salt and mix with 1 tsp of sesame oil and set aside
  2. mix cornstarch with 2 1/2 tbsp water and set aside
  3. mince scallion whites and slice scallion greens – combine whites with garlic, ginger, douchi – set aside
  4. bring a large amount of water to a boil and add some salt – turn off heat and slide tofu into water – cover and leave alone for 30 minutes
  5. heat wok – add 2 tbsp oil – if using meat, stirfry until crispy – transfer meat out leaving as much oil as you can
  6. lower heat and fry doubanjiang for a minute until aromatic – add preserved vegetable and wait another minute
  7. add scallion whites/garlic/ginger/douchi and fry for another minute until pretty – add a grind of black pepper and all the szechuan pepper
  8. add water/stock to wok and bring to a light simmer over high heat – transfer tofu into mixture and coat well… you want to make sure the tofu soaks in all that flavor but doesn’t boil in the sauce
  9. add light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, meat (if using) – cover and let simmer for 5-10 minutes
  10. add half the cornstarch/water mixture – stir and add the rest – taste and add salt as necessary (it probably won’t be) – add scallion greens
  11. transfer to serving bowl
Recipe Notes

influenced by as well as Fuchsia Dunlop