Something amazing happened last week when I was browsing down the aisles of our local supermarket I stumbled upon Tofu. I immediately put it in into my trolley and it was one of the best food decisions I made as someone who is always on the scout for healthy cooking options.
Now what is tofu, some of you may ask. It resembles the highly valued (specially by vegetarian North Indians) paneer but is a way more healthier swap for paneer aka cottage cheese. the white soft and spongy blocks of Tofu are made from soy milk and it is a nutritionally packed food, high in iron, calcium and other micro nutrients but low in fat. :-)
A lot has been said about the health benefits of tofu, so without much ado let me share with you my first time cooking experience with tofu.
I got 500gm of fresh tofu for only AED 5 (price way less than paneer) and cooked two recipes with it and one of it was chilli tofu.
The basic rule is to treat tofu as you treat paneer and cook in the same as it tastes and looks just the same.
This chilli tofu is a vegetarian's delight cooked with vegetables like green capsicum and onion. It is a dry recipe and a spicy Indo-chinese version so we will use soy sauce and hot red chilli sauce.
It is not a quick recipe and it took me 40 min to get done with it but once the husband - M and Little M tasted it I knew it was all worth the effort and time.
I have already been getting requests from M to make the chilli tofu once again. :-)
You can serve it with fried rice which is what I did or eat it as a dry starter or even roll it up into chapattis to make a chilli tofu wrap which can be an easy lunch box snack.
Here is a step by step recipe with lots of pictures :-)
For marinating tofu:
- 250gm tofu, cubed
- 2 tbsp corn flour
- 1/4 tsp red chili and black pepper powder each
- 2 tbsp oil
- 1 onion, cut in squares
- 1 capsicum, cut in squares
- 1-2 spring onion greens chopped
- 1 tbsp each of ginger and garlic, finely chopped
- 5 green chilies, sliced vertically
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp hot red chili sauce or hot sauce
- 1/4 tsp each of red chili powder, black pepper
- 2 tbsp water to add in corn flour
- Start by patting dry tofu and then cut it into cubes.
- In a mixing bowl, put the tofu cubes and add 2 tbsp corn flour, 1/4 tsp of red chili and black pepper powder each, 2 tbsp oil and a pinch of salt
- Mix it all very gently and carefully without breaking tofu cubes.
- In a non-stick tawa or frying pan, put 2 tbsp of oil and fry marinated tofu cubes on a medium heat without breaking the cubes until golden and crisp. Make sure to not fry for more than 5 min as it will harden the tofu cubes.
- While the tofu is being fried in the bowl in which we marinated there will be some leftover corn flour and spices add 3-4 tbsp of water to it and mix. We will use it later to thicken our gravy.
3. In another small bowl, take 1 tbsp soy sauce, 1 tsp hot red chili sauce or hot sauce, 1/4 tsp each of red chili powder, black pepper and mix with a spoon and keep aside.
Preparing the gravy
- In a non-stick pan add 1-2 tbsp oil and add the finely chopped ginger and garlic. Stir.
2. Add the onion and capsicum.
3. On medium heat stir fry the veggies until capsicum is cooked.
4. Add the mixed sauces and salt but not too much of salt as the sauces already contain salt. Stir.
5. Add corn starch paste. Stir and check the taste and add salt or red chilli powder if required. Add the pan-fried tofu cubes. Stir.
Garnish with spring onion greens and serve hot.
I would highly recomend this recipe if you like a hot and spicy stir fry. Go ahead and try this easy recipe that will surely make you and your family happy.
Please do share your thoughts with me on this recipe and drop me a line or two about how your recipe turned out. I would love to read what you think! :-)