Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Tofu with black bean sauce

If I ever fell on hard times, I would probably eat this dish at at least 3 times a week.

Block of tofu: $1
1/4 lb. pork: $1
Chicken broth: $.50
Small quantities of beans, garlic, scallions, sauce, rice: ~$1

We're talking less than $4 for a rich, delicious, fast and, as far as I can tell, healthy dinner for two. Go on, try it.

Adapted from Grace Young's The Breath of a Wok:

1. Cut a 14 oz. block of firm tofu into 12 pieces. Put them on paper towels to drain and sprinkle with a little salt.

2. Whisk 2/3 cup chicken stock with 1 T. oyster sauce, 1 tsp. cornstarch and a pinch of sugar. Slice 2 scallions thinly.

3. Rinse and drain 2-3 T. Chinese fermented black beans. Mince 3-4 garlic cloves. In a bowl, combine the beans, garlic, 1 T. soy sauce and 1 tsp. Shaoxing rice wine. Mash with a fork.

4. Heat a wok on high and swirl in a little oil. Add 4 ounces ground pork, stir-frying just until cooked. Remove the meat to a bowl, keeping its juices in the wok.

5. Add the tofu to the wok, cooking a couple minutes until browned. Stir in the bean mixture and stir-fry 30 seconds until fragrant. Now stir the broth mixture and add it to the wok, stirring until the sauce thickens. Add the pork and scallions and simmer another minute. Serve with white rice.

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