As you might already know, tofu is considered as the Eastern cheese. It is widely use through out the world and be the main sour of protein and cheese substitution for vegetarians. Aside from the most popular pre-processed: deep fry, tofu can also be stir fried, by itself or with vegetable. Tofu Stir-fry can also be marinated and used in braised dish as well.
There are several method for stir-frying tofu. But nonetheless, the tofu should be dried and firm texture. Soft regular tofu works too, it just took a longer time and often feel more creamy inside while chewy on the out. Silken tofu is definitely a no-no as it would not hold it shape well, unless you’re doing a mapo stir fried.
After picking out tofu, you should chunk it down to cube/rectangular bite size. I often prefer the later as it seem to absorb marinated products better, plus easier to handle with chopsticks. Tofu chunks then should be dried for at least 30 minutes before stir frying.
One more thing, when frying/stir frying, veggies oil seem to work better as it seems to get rid of the sour smell. Also, you could either stir fry tofu, then add veggies or do a deep fry, then re-stir frying.
Recipe for Tofu Stir-fry with vegetable
- 1 block of regular tofu
- 1 clove garlic or shallot onion finely mince
- 1 lb vegetable of choice green bean, mushroom, radish carrot, broccoli, corn, etc. or mix
- 2 Tbsp stock of choice veggies for vegan or chicken/seafood for other flavor
- Scallion cilantro, parsley or any prefer herb
- Ground pepper
- 2 Tbsp Veggies Oil for frying
- Drain, wash and rinse tofu to make sure all acidic solution are out.
- Cut tofu into cube or rectangular chunk (1 x 2 x 1/2 inch)
- Place all tofu chunks on paper towel wrapped strainer/basket.
- Let air dried at least 30 minutes before cooking ( I usually let them out the night before).
- Heat up your wok or wide sauce pan
- Add oil, when oil is hot, turn heat down to low.
- Add tofu chunks in, gently stir to separate those chunks with chopsticks or wooden spatula.. Careful not to break the pieces.
- Checking them every 3-5 minutes, when the bottom sides is golden brown, carefully flip all the pieces.
- When all sides are brown, remove all pieces from wok. Transfer them to parchment/paper towel covered strainer.
You could also deep fry tofu and proceed to stir frying w/ veggies instead of the above steps.
- Remove all the excess oil from the wok/sauce pan your just used for frying tofu. It should have a nice thin layer of oil coated on the bottom.
- Heat up on high (if not hot already)
- Add minced garlic/shallot to pan and stir them until golden brown (do not burn)
- Add back the fried tofu and pour in your prefer stock. Stir and cover for 1 minutes.
- Now add your vegetable and a sprinkle of salt. Stir them well. Depend on the veggies being add, you might need to cover it a couple minutes(i.e. carrot, corn, broccoli, green bean, etc) to cook, especially if you're using raw/frozen veggies.
- Add herb, scallion, stir well and turn off heat.
- Sprinkle on some ground pepper and serve