Vegetarian Mapo Tofu FTW
(These quantities serve one person, maybe with some leftovers)
Start jasmine rice in a rice cooker.
- an onion, coarser grain (~1x1cm squares)
- 2-3 cloves of garlic, fine
- grind a tablespoon of red sichuan peppercorns
- whole red chilis may be good too, but I didn't have any!
Heat a large pan or wok, and add:
- ~2 tablespoons sesame oil
- a heaped tablespoon of bamboo shoots in chili oil
Once hot toss the garlic, sichuan pepper and onions into the pan, and cook to infuse into the oil and toast a little
While cooking, chop:
- a block of medium-firm tofu into satisfyingly sized cubes,
- remove stems from 3 fresh shitake mushrooms and slice into satisfying thinish slices
Once the garlic/chili/onion is slightly toasted, add:
- a long dash of shaoxing cooking wine
- later you can add a dash of red wine (mine might have been vinegar-y, so taste to see if the dish wants some acid)
(you're now cooking at a lower temperature because of the liquid)
- the tofu and mushrooms
- a heaped tablespoon of chili bean paste (doubanjiang -- I had a Cantonese
type on hand, though Sichuan variants may be better)
- 1/3 of a serve (150g) of beyond beef fake meat (NOT beyond beef crumbles, but some other fake meats may work well too) chop first or break up with a wooden spoon
- a good pour of oyster sauce or vegetarian oyster sauce
Cook on medium or low-medium heat (not too much maillard reaction) until the rice is ready
Then stir a heaped teaspoon of corn starch into some warm water, and mix into the tofu
Taste and make final adjustments to quantities of oyster sauce, acid/vinegar, cooking wine, chili.
Serve over the rice, garnish with coriander leaves (cilantro), or spring onion
if you want to be traditional.