Black Pepper Crispy Tofu…craveable, delicious, meat-free
I have really been loving the Meatless Monday kick I’ve been on for the last little while. It’s becoming one of my favourite cooking days! Today was no exception.
I always have great intentions when I buy tofu. I think I’m going to eat it and become a vegetarian convert, but I haven’t really fallen for it yet. Until today. Things changed after eating tofu this way.
Black Pepper Crispy Tofu will be a new weeknight staple for us and hopefully your family as well. This is a great level of spice and the texture of the tofu is excellent!
A few key takeaways:
1) Properly drain your tofu. Take tofu out of package and sandwich between two double stacks of paper towel. Gently place a cast iron pan (or something with a bit of weight to it) on top of the tofu and let it press the water out for about 20-30 mins.
2) Thoroughly coat the tofu in cornstarch.
3) Pan fry the tofu and don’t move it around too much. You want about a centimetre of oil in the pan and make sure it’s fully up to temp before adding in the tofu cubes.
- 1 package of firm or extra-firm tofu
- 1/2 cup corn starch
- 2 tbsp Chinese five spice
- 4 tbsp vegetable oil
- 6 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 inch of ginger, minced
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- 1/4 white onion, diced
- 2 tbsp coarsely ground fresh black pepper
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 1/2 tsp hoisin sauce
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp sriracha
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- Optional sides:
- package of instant ramen noodles
- I love this dish. Really fun, and it will make you fall in love with tofu. First step is making sure we properly drain the tofu. This is what makes it crispy so don't rush. Take tofu out of package and sandwich between two double stacks of paper towel. Gently place a cast iron pan (or something with a bit of weight to it) on top of the tofu and let it press the water out for about 20-30 mins. Once that is done, cut into bite-sized cubes.
- In a bowl, add in the corn starch and the Chinese five spice and toss the cubes of tofu. Heat a large pan over medium high heat and add in 4 tbsp of canola or vegetable oil. Once pan is up to temperature, add in the tofu and don't move them too much. Let them sit on each side long enough to get crispy. Around 4-5 minutes per side. Once done, remove and let drain on cooling rack or paper towel.
- While tofu is frying, place another large pan over low-medium heat. Add in the oil and the butter. Once butter is melted add in the garlic, ginger, onion, cilantro and black pepper. Make sure the pan isn't too hot here as you aren't looking for this to brown.
- Next add in the honey, hoisin, sriracha, soy, lime, and chopped cilantro. Stir to incorporate.
- Once all of the ingredients for the sauce are in the pan, reduce heat to low and gently add in the tofu. Stir until tofu is covered with black pepper sauce. Serve with lime, noodles or rice, and some pickled cucumbers.
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