Browsing the aisles at Trader Joe’s, I was excited to see tofu. A picture of tofu topped with ground pork quickly came to mind. It’s a well-loved dish that’s commonly served at Chinese restaurants. My home-cooked version uses steamed (not deepfried) tofu, has added beta carotene and looks better? Okay, I’m just showin’ off here 😉 . I have no idea how my dish came out looking this pretty. Stoked!
Well, as you probably know, tofu is made from the curd of coagulated soy milk. It’s low in calories and cholesterol, gluten-free (whatever that means, I never really figured this out), and a good source of protein, calcium and iron. So it’s all good. But tofu on its own can be very bland which, if you look on the positive side, means there are endless ways you can funky it up. So here’s what I did with mine and let me warn you, this is crazy delicious.
This is the tofu I used, the firm type. Soft tofu tastes good too but it breaks easily. So if you’re new to tofu, or if you’re planning to steam it like I’m doing here, firm tofu is easier to handle.
These are the other ingredients I used. As usual, these are estimates ‘cos I don’t measure my ingredients.
- 1 cup ground pork
- 2-3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 8 baby carrots, finely diced
- cooking oil (I use avocado oil)
- 2-3 teaspoons spicy black bean paste (comes in a bottle and can be found at any Asian grocer)
- drizzle of sesame oil
- a few sprigs of cilantro and spring onions, roughly chopped
First thing, I bring to boil a pot of water to steam the tofu. If you own a fancy electric steamer (I don’t), use that. I do it the old school way with a big pot and a steaming basket.
Meantime, I drizzle some avocado oil on my skillet and saute the garlic till fragrant. Then I add the carrots followed by the pork and spicy black bean paste. At this point, you can season to taste if you like. Stirfry on medium high to high heat till everything is cooked through, about 10 minutes. Finish off with a generous drizzle of sesame oil. Smells so good!
And it’s time to plate this baby – steamed tofu in the middle topped with the ground pork and carrots, and garnished with fresh herbs. Look at that burst of colors… definitely a feast for the eyes before the tummy. Enjoy!
The spicy, salty ground pork is the perfect complement to the bland tofu, and the subtle crunch of the carrots adds a layer of texture to the smoothness of the tofu. Super delicious and healthy. Goes great over steamed rice and vegetables. I’m excited for you to try this… and if you do, let me know how it goes, okay?