I like to think that Chinese food is the solution to all of life’s problems. From personal experience, I can say it has definitely lifted up my spirits and reenergized me for what is to come! So I decided to learn a new recipe for one of my favorites, tofu and peppers in black bean sauce, and a successful couple of meals led me to post a quick recipe for all of you. When I do post recipes, I’ll try to make them 1) as quick as possible, and 2) try to mention substitutes for ingredients you may not have or alternate, similar dishes because I know we’re all busy and can’t devote as much time to cooking as we would like all the time. Still, chopping vegetables and preparing food is incredibly therapeutic!
- Take a package of firm tofu (normally 350-400 grams) and drain the water. If you have an extra ten minutes or can prep in advance, wrap the block of tofu in paper towels and place under a hard object to make the tofu less moist and to make it firmer by squeezing the water out. Make sure weight is evenly distributed across the block so that it doesn’t break up the tofu.
- Cut up the tofu into manageable, 1-inch squares.
- Stir-fry the tofu in sesame oil. Other types of oil are fine too, but sesame oil is normally the kind used in preparing Chinese food (not sure why, I will Google this and post it up here or if someone else beats me to it, go ahead and give us some reasons). You can add one green chili pepper if you want to add some spiciness to your dish, especially if you know the black bean sauce isn’t to your perfect liking.
- Turn the tofu over so that each side is a golden-yellow color, and the amount you stir-fry really depends on how crispy you want the outside of the tofu to be. I love crispy so I leave it on the pan until each side is golden.
- While the tofu is cooking, cut up the other ingredients- bell peppers of various colors into triangular shapes, minced ginger (should amount to 2 large teaspoons), and minced garlic (2 cloves).
- Take the tofu off the stove when it is done and put it aside. Stir-fry your peppers in sesame oil for around 3-4 minutes (be careful not to let them blacken) and then add your ginger and garlic. Stir-fry for an additional minute, then add your store-bought (or home-made) black bean sauce. I didn’t make my own black bean sauce because it seemed time-consuming, but when I become a more adept chef maybe I will make it myself.
- Finally, add the tofu and mix thoroughly without breaking up the pieces of tofu (this shouldn’t be too difficult at this point because the tofu will have formed a tougher exterior after stir-frying).
What do you guys think?