Spicy Tofu and Edamame Beans

You gotta love the Chinese!  Well, I am one, so I guess I’m not totally impartial.  They sure know how to stretch one ingredient!

This whole dish is basically one ingredient, in three forms.  The almighty soy bean is the basis of lots of Chinese cooking. So the actual bean in its original form is used, then there’s the tofu and the soy sauce……..genius!  And not one item tastes like the other.

Also, I’m not sure why these soy beans, which are of Chinese origin got a Japanese name.  It’s okay, I love the Japanese too.  They gave us sushi!!


Spicy Tofu and Edamame Beans

from Ching-He Huang

Bean Curd Stir-Fry

2 tablespoons groundnut oil (peanut)

14 ounces firm fresh bean curd (firm tofu), drained and cut into 1/2-inch thick rectangles

3 tablespoons light soy sauce

1 teaspoon dark soy sauce

1 tablespoon black rice vinegar (recommended: Chinkiang) or balsamic vinegar

1 teaspoon dried chile flakes

Edamame Beans

1 tablespoon groundnut oil (peanut)

1 red chile, seeded and finely chopped

Water, as needed

3 ounces fresh or frozen edamame beans, thawed

1 teaspoon light soy sauce

1 teaspoon black rice vinegar (recommended: Chinkiang) or balsamic vinegar

Handful fresh cilantro leaves and stalks, finely chopped

To make the bean curd: Heat the groundnut oil in a large flat-bottomed pan over a medium heat. Add the bean curd, and cook for 2 minutes. Add the light soy sauce and cook until the sauce has reduced and the bean curd is browned on one side. Using a small palette knife or fork, lift and turn each piece, careful not to break the bean curd. Cook just to color the second side.

Add the dark soy sauce, and vinegar, and cook until the liquid has reduced by half. Season the dish with the dried chile flakes. Transfer the bean curd to a serving plate and set aside.

To make the edamame: Reheat the pan and add the groundnut oil. Stir-fry the chile for a few seconds, and then add the edamame beans. Add a sprinkle of water to help create steam, and cook for less than 1 minute. Season the edamame with the light soy sauce, and vinegar, then stir in the chopped cilantro.

To serve, pour the edamame beans over the bean curd and serve immediately. For a fuller meal, serve with steamed rice.