Mapo Tofu

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    Cooking time: 15-20 minutes

    Serving size: Enough for 2

    • 1/2 tbsp szechuan peppercorn

    • 14 oz of silken tofu

    • 1/4 cup minced meat (beef, pork, chicken thigh, or mushrooms for vegetarian version)

    • 2 cloves of garlic minced

    • 1 tbsp of fermented chili bean paste (add 1 more tbsp for spicier mapo tofu)

    • 1 tbsp of soy sauce

    • 1 tbsp cooking wine (shaoxing wine preferred)

    • 1 tsp sugar

    • 1 cup of broth (i used beef broth)

    • 1/2 tsp black vinegar

    • 1 tbsp water + 1 tsp cornstarch


    • Start by toasting your Szechuan peppercorn on a dry pan. Toast until the spice smells fragrant. Grind it up with the back of a knife or in a spice grinder and set it on the side.

    • Prepare your tofu by draining the water, then cutting into 1 inch cubes, then adding to a pot of water with 2 tbsp of salt.

    • Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 5 min or until tofu cubes look more swollen.

    • Turn off the heat and leave it in the water until it's ready to be used.

    • Heat up 2 tbsp of oil on a pot over medium heat.

    • Add your meat mince (i used beef) to the oil once the oil starts to shimmer. Quickly break up the meat, making sure to brown everything.

    • Add 1 tbsp (or 2 for more spice) to the beef and cook until you see a thin layer of red oil, about 30 sec - 1 min.

    • Add your minced garlic and cook for 30 sec to get everything coated and cooking.

    • Now add 1 cup of your broth of choice (I used beef). To the broth add the soy sauce, cooking wine, and sugar.

    • Now using a slotted spoon, scoop the cooked tofu and gently place into the boiling broth.

    • Be very careful as you're transferring this silken tofu so it doesn't break.

    • Boil the tofu for about 3-4 min, gently shaking the pan in a clockwise motion.

    • Once the broth has reduced by 1/3, add in 1 tsp of black vinegar & the szechuan peppercorn.

    • Now mix up the cornstarch + water slurry, then add to the broth.

    • Cook until sauce thickens, ~1 MIN.

    • Serve with chopped scallions and a big bowl of rice.