Mushroom versus tofu – a little bit about Mapo Tofu.
Mapo tofu is a traditional Chinese dish, originating from the Sichuan Province. Dishes from the Sichuan Province tend to be spicy and this is no different.
As the name suggests tofu is traditionally used in this dish and in particular mapo tofu, which roughly translates to ‘pock-marked face’ which is how the surface of mapo tofu can appear.
Here, we swap out the tofu for mushrooms. Mushrooms are highly flavoursome and nutritional. They are a very low calorie source of fibre, protein and antioxidants. The texture of mushrooms also works well in a lot of dishes.
Eat seasonally for fresh and affordable produce.
Autumn is mushroom season in southern areas of Western Australia. So this is a great dish to prepare in autumn as the nights start to coll off and when mushrooms are in abundance.
Mushroom Mapo Tofu
Preparation: 20 mins Cook time: 1 hour Serves: 4
Tip! The spice can be dialled back in this dish by using less chilli, chilli oil and chilli bean sauce, and also by lessening or removing the pepper from the soy custard. Alternatively, you can serve the dish with rice, or potatoes, to help balance the heat out.
Gas tip! You can do this on your barbecue or on a gas cook top. If you don’t use gas in your kitchen, you can prepare it on your barbecue. Just make sure you’ve got the Kwik-Gas ready to go.
- 4 tablespoons of vegetable oil
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 30 grams of ginger (about 3cm), finely chopped
- 6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 2 long red chilli, finely chopped
- 500 grams diced mushrooms (mix of button and shiitake)
- 4 tablespoons of chilli oil
- 4 tablespoons chilli bean sauce
- 10 tablespoons Shaoxing wine
- 400 ml vegetable stock
- 3 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 2 tablespoons caster sugar
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- 3 teaspoons corn flour mixed with 3 teaspoon cold water
- Coriander and thinly sliced spring onion, to serve
- 800 ml unsweetened soy milk
- 7 eggs, lightly beaten
- 120 ml light soy sauce
- 2 teaspoon ground native pepper – this can be substituted with Sichuan peppercorns
- Heat oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion, ginger, garlic and chilli and stir until lightly caramelised (3-5 minutes). Add mushrooms, and cook until light golden (3-4 minutes).
- Add chilli oil, bean sauce and Shaoxing and cook until liquid has reduced to almost nothing (3-4 minutes).
- Add stock, cover, and simmer over medium heat until stock just covers mince (30 minutes).
- Add remaining ingredients (except corn flour), stir to combine, then stir in corn flour slurry, bring to the boil and cook until thickened slightly (1-2 minutes).
- For soy custard, combine ingredients and ½ teaspoon fine salt in a bowl and whisk until well combined. Strain into a wide 1.5 litre serving bowl, cover with plastic wrap and steam in a steamer over a saucepan of boiling water until custard is set (15 minutes).
- Top soy custard with a generous layer of mushroom mix, garnish with slices of spring onion and coriander.
- Plate it up with steamed rice to help bolster the dish or to help balance out the heat.
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