Saturday, February 9, 2013

Szechwan Tofu

Szechwan Tofu from the "heavenly country"

Wikipedia says: Szechuan cuisine, Sichuan cuisine, or Szechwan cuisine (Chinese: 四川菜; pinyin: Sìchuān cài or Chinese: 川菜;pinyin: chuān cài) is a style of Chinese cuisine originating from Sichuan province in southwestern China. It has bold flavours, particularly the pungency and spiciness resulting from liberal use of garlic and chili peppers, as well as the unique flavour of the Sichuan pepper. Peanuts, sesame paste, and ginger are also prominent ingredients in Szechuan cooking.[1]

Sichuan is colloquially known as the "heavenly country" due to its abundance of food and natural resources. One ancient Chinese account declared that the "people of Sichuan uphold good flavour, and they are fond of hot and spicy taste.
Garlic and chilli oil is what I rely on a lot for this dish….

Recipe for the sauce:

I trusted the following source to make my own but there are several store-bought ones readily available, too!

Accompaniments: Steamed rice or fried rice; white rice or brown rice. The perfect spice and heat of the dish will be loyal to all
Instead of Tofu: This preparation is highly versatile. Tofu can be replaced with any meat, fish or vegetables.

Modifications: The heat from the sauce can be scaled up or down. The Tofu can be corn flour battered and deep fried for crispiness.


  1. 1 package Firm tofu
  2. 3 finely chooped Bell peppers - preferably green for the heat
  3. 1 medium finely chopped red Onion
  4. 3 tbsp Fresh finely minced garlic
  5. 2 tbsp Sesame oil – any cooking oil of choice may be used
  6. 2 tbsp Cornstarch/cornflower
  7. Salt to taste
  8. 2 tbsp Brown sugar (optional)
  9. Finely chopped Green onions (optional)


  1. Cut the tofu into half-inch cubes, drain well, and marinade with fresh lime juice or soy sauce. Marinate for about 20 – 20 mins
  2. Heat sesame oil in a skillet and season with garlic; fry till golden brown
  3. Add the bell peppers and onion; sauté till cooked – vegetables should not be soft but crispy
  4. Add the Szechuan sauce (as much as you prefer) and bring the mix together
  5. Add the tofu (leave the marinade behind) at this point and mix well
  6. Briskly stir in corn flour in 4 tbs cold water and add
  7. Mix very well, add salt and sugar
  8. Let simmer until the gravy thickens
  9. Garnish with finely chopped green onions
  10. Serve with hot rice

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