Sunday, June 22, 2014

3331. BACON with WOOD EAR MUSHROOMS and TOFU (培根双鲜)

4 oz sliced bacon, cut into bite-sized pieces, about 1″ square and between 1/8″ and 1/4″ thick
14 oz extra firm tofu, cut into bite-sized triangles (see above)
1 oz dried wood ear mushrooms (木耳, mùěr), soaked until soft in lukewarm water (about 15-30 minutes), and then cut or torn into pieces to match the size of the bacon
4 cloves garlic, sliced
1 teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns (husks only)
1 very generous tablespoon spicy bean paste (辣豆瓣酱, là dòubàn jiàng)
1/4 cup water or stock
2 teaspoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons dark soy sauce

Heat your wok on medium heat until hot but not smoking. Add the bacon (#1) in batches so that each piece can lay flat against the bottom of the wok. Let it fry until it just begins to curl, then turn and continue cooking for another minute or so. Remove the bacon to drain on a paper towel. Repeat until all the bacon is cooked. It should be gently crispy in places but overall still flexible and soft.

Bacon fat will have collected in your wok at this point. Heat it until hot but not smoking, and then add the tofu (#2) in batches, frying on each side like the bacon. Treat the pieces gently so that they don’t break up. Remove them to a paper towel to drain.

Make sure the bacon fat in the wok is once again hot but not quite smoking. Add the mushrooms (#3) and stir-fry to heat, perhaps one minute. Then add the garlic (#4) and continue stir-frying for another 30 seconds. Next, add the Sichuan peppercorns and the bean paste (#5). Stir-fry everything for another half minute.

Stir in the water and soy sauce (#6), heat until just bubbling, and then add the tofu back to the wok. Stir gently until everything is heated through. Garnish with some chopped scallions in the final stir.

Serve with rice and contrasting dishes.

bacon recipe source: Will, TastyAsia, June 14, 2013


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