The best Mapo Tofu I had when I was growing up was at a Hakka Restaurant at Bras Basah Road in Singapore. I remember what gave their dish a distinct taste was the salted yellow soy bean or tau cheo that they added. I learned to add Szechuan pepper from my Szechuan friend who also makes very delicious Mapo Tofu.
2 blocks of Silken Tofu cut into small rectangular pieces
1 shallot, chopped
1 heaping teaspoon of Lee Kum Kee Chilli Bean Paste
1 heaping tablespoon of Yeo’s (Yeo Hiap Seng) Salted Yellow Soy Beans or Tau Cheo
1 bunch of green onions, chopped
1.5 pounds of ground pork or ground beef
3 tablespoons of peanut oil
1/2 cup of water
1 tablespoon of ground white pepper
3 shakes of ground black pepper
3 shakes of ground Szechuan pepper
Heat up oil in a frying pan, add in chopped shallots, chilli bean paste and Yeo’s salted soy beans and ground meat. Fry until meat is cooked, then add in tofu. Avoid stirring to prevent tofu from becoming mushy. Flip the tofu carefully in the sauce to allow sauce to coat the tofu evenly. Add water, cover pan and bring everything to a boil. When everything starts bubbling, add ground white pepper, ground black pepper, ground Sichuan pepper. Mix them in well, then add green onions to the top of the tofu and turn off heat.
Copyright 2012 From the Kitchen of Eloise