I’ve always cooked adobong sitaw (string beans) with either coarsely ground or minced pork. When Sam asked me to cook a vegetarian version, I wasn’t exactly sure how to execute the dish. Then, I remembered the mock scrambled eggs made with firm tofu and decided I’d use the same technique to create mock minced pork. It worked very well indeed. The trick really is to season the tofu well and make it expel as much of the liquid it contains.
I used Himalayan black salt to season the tofu initially. If unavailable, you can just add more soy sauce at the latter part of the cooking.
- about 150 g. of firm tofu
- about ½ tsp. of Himalayan black salt
- 1 tbsp. of vegetable oil
- a bunch of string beans (a.k.a. yard-long beans), cut into 2-inch lengths
- 1 tsp. of minced garlic
- ½ tsp. of freshly cracked black pepper
- a bay leaf
- a generous splash of vinegar
- 1 tbsp. of soy sauce
- Rinse the tofu and press between kitchen towels to remove as much of the water as you can.
- Using your hands, crumble the tofu so that it resembles minced meat. Sprinkle lightly with Himalayan black salt.
- Heat the vegetable oil in a frying pan (non-stick works best). Add the seasoned tofu and cook over medium heat, uncovered and with occasional stirring, until quite dry, about 10 minutes.
- Stir in the cut string beans, garlic, pepper and bay leaf.
- Pour in the vinegar.
- Cover the pan and let everything cook until the string beans are tender (but not overly so) and the mixture is almost dry, about 10 minutes.
- Pour in the soy sauce. Cook, stirring, for another minute or so.
- Taste. Adjust the seasonings, if needed.
- Serve hot.