A Sichuan dish with chili, gong bao doufu is spicy. This stir-fried tofu and bell pepper is a vegetarian (and vegan) dish cooked by Alex. We enjoyed it with a pork, sausage and beans dish.
As with most Chinese stir-fried dishes, the prep time is twice as long as the cooking time. But don’t let that frighten you. The cooking time is five minutes so, multiply that by two to get the prep time. But that, of course, is a subjective time measurement. How long the actual prep time is depends on how fast you chop, dice and measure the ingredients. If there are distractions (Postman at the door? Baby crying? Phone ringing?), prep time might take much longer.
For best results, I recommend giving stir frying basics a once over even before you start prepping.
- 3 bell peppers (Alex used red, yellow and green)
- 1 small handful of green beans
- 50 grams fresh tender bamboo shoots (canned may be substituted)
- 125 grams firm tofu
- a two-inch knob of ginger
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
- 1 tablespoon chili oil
- 1 teaspoon corn starch dissolved in ½ cup water
- 3 tablespoons cooking oil
- Core the bell peppers and scrape off the seeds (see illustration). Cut into one-inch pieces.
- String the green beans then cut into two-inch lengths.
- Cut the tofu into bite-size cubes.
- Julienne the bamboo shoot.
- Peel the ginger and grate.
- In a small bowl, mix together the ginger, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, starch solution and chili oil.
- Heat the cooking oil in a wok or frying pan until fine wisps of smoke float on the surface.
- Stir fry the bell peppers, green beans and bamboo shoots for a minute.
- Add the tofu to the vegetables, sprinkle with salt and continue stir frying for two minutes.
- Pour in the starch solution and stir. Cook for another minute or two until the sauce is thick and clear.
- Taste the stir-fried tofu and bell pepper. Adjust the seasonings, if needed, before serving.