For the Sauce
- 2 tbsp tobanjang, Chinese chili bean paste
- 1 tbsp oyster sauce
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp shaoxing wine, optional
- 1 tbsp black vinegar
- 1 tsp sugar or agave nectar
For Mapo Tofu
- 1 tbsp cooking oil
- 1 tbsp chili oil (you can substitute to cooking oil)
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 oz ginger, chopped
- 1 red chili, chopped (optional)
- 3 green onions, chopped
- 1 tsp toasted and grind Sichuan peppercorn*
- 1/2 lb ground pork, chicken, beef, lamb, turkey, crumbled tofu, chopped mushrooms or plant based meat
- 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- 1 block (14 oz) silken tofu, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
- 1 tbsp corn starch
- Combine all ingredients for sauce in a mixing bowl, set aside.
- Heat a cast iron wok over medium heat. (if you are using carbon steal wok, heat over high heat and adjust cooking time through out the recipe.) Add cooking oil, chili oil, chopped garlic, ginger, chili and green onions. Stir fry all together about 1 minute then stir in Sichuan peppercorn powder.
- Add your choice of protein and breakdown into small pieces. Cook 2 to 3 minutes or until fully cooked and ground edges. Pour sauce mixture and stir fry sauce, protein and aromatic vegetables together about 2 to 3 minutes.
- Pour stock and deglaze bottom of wok. Bring it to boil. Add cubed tofu and carefully stir. You want to keep the shape of tofu as square as possible. Bring back to boil. Meanwhile, mix cornstarch and 2 tbsp water. Pour starch mixture into boiling mapo tofu base while carefully stirring. This is very important, because cornstarch mixture will thicken mapo tofu immediately only where it added into.
- Garnish with some chopped green onions and extra Sichuan peppercorn powder. Serve with warm cooked rice. Enjoy!
Toast Sichuan peppercorn on dry skillet until you can smell aroma. Grind with mortar and pestle or coffee/spice grinder until fine but still a little coarse powder.