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« Another event. With food. At Nordstrom | Main | Mimi's Cafe- for breakfast. It is good at this chain. »

Tuesday, 20 May 2008


Derek Ray

Krik that looks amazing. When I lived in China back in 05 Mapo Tofu was one of if not my favorite dish to eat. I would go to the lady who made it the day before so she could get fresh tofu for the day. I look forward to trying this one out.

Also do you have a favorite place in SD to get Mapo Tofu?

Thanks for sharing!



Never seen it this way before. Almost like making Korean soondobu.


this looks good. i have a question, though. i went shoppng for some ingredients recently to vien dong in order to make something i read on tigers & strawberries. i could not find sichuan peppercorns. i looked all over that dang store, and ended up just using black peppercorns i had at home. is this something they should obviously have at vien dong, or am i missing something fundamental, like viern dong is mostly vietnamese foodstuffs and not chinese so i should look elsewhere? i am getting better at the asian grocery shopping, but am still clueless sometimes. i had a heck of a time finding fermented black beans, too. i did find those eventually (at least i think so, i got 'salted black beans', which i think are the same).


Hi Derek - Like everything I make, this one is very easy. I like Ba Ren's Mapo Dou Fu, so you may want to try it there, though I haven't had it in a while.

Hi Billy - Way less sour, though. In fact, quite different...the layers of heat is quite different.

Hi Dave - I last bought Sichuan Peppercorns from 99 Ranch Market - go to the isle with seasonings. It is, or was on the bottom shelf, about halfway doen the isle - package says "Pepper Corns" on may also say Prickly Ash...looks like dried tiny little buds. I'm hoping that the Fermented Black Bean you bought came in a cardboard "cannister", sort of like a small Quaker Oats container...the stuff I've bought from those plastic bags was pretty lousy. Good luck, and let me know if I may be of more assistance.


mmm, I'm coming over with my bowl(s) of rice :)


I'm right behind Kat with chopsticks in hand. I sure miss my Mom's version of this dish. She liked to add a little ground pork because she said it added "xiang wei" (umami). Me, I'll take almost any version.


Dave beat me to it. Thanks Kirk! Now I know how to get my numb on at home.


hi Kat - I'll have a bowl wating! ;o)

Hi Carol - Yes, I had to compensate for the lack of meat products by adding or increasing a few items.

Hi Jan - For some reason the phrase "numb on" combined with JanFrederick makes me afraid....very afraid.


This is one of my all-time favorite dishes, both to eat and cook. Your version looks a lot better than mine though!

Jeff C

Kirk, I've thought of a variation using stinky tofu. It would be similar to the Ma La Huo Guo or hot pot style. Now that stinky tofu is actually available in some Asian markets,and a fairly good quality and taste. What do you think of using stinky tofu?
Some people have said its like 10 day old gym socks left to percolate in a pressure cooker with horse sweat. I find the taste intoxicating.


Hi Howie - I know this is not PC, but unless it starts with at least 1/3 cup of oil..... ;o) BTW, I'm sure you're being a tad modest there!

Hi Jeffrey - That taste may be intoxicating, but the smell would be "putrifying." I do hope that you have a really, really good ventilation system. The Missus might just go for it....but it ain't happening in my kitchen!

jeff c

Kirk, another thought. I find the quality of the sichuan peppercorns to be fairly inferior. For some reason, they don't have the ma qualities that you usually can get in the restaurants. Conjecture says that it is because of the sterilization process for the biologic control to make the peppercorns safe for the US or that we get the old inferior stuff and all the good stuff is used in Sichuan.
I use the sichuan peppercorn infused oils to cook and also flavor mustard greens and pak choi. The combinations make for extremely fragrant dishes.


Hi Jeffrey - I think it's a combination of both....I end up using 2-3 times the amount in the recipe. Also, some of the stuff loses its pungency quickly, and I stay away from it if it looks like it has been sitting on the shelves a bit too long.



That recipe brought tears to my eyes, probably because I could feel the heat through my screen. Just the way I like my mapo tofu!


Hi CP - Nice to hear from you, I hope all is well. I'm sure you make a pretty mean version of this.


Ahhhhhh, so that was the missing element: A LOT OF OIL in the beginning!!!!



Hi Pete - LOL! You can cut the oil in half if you want. The main thing is to develop what oil you have, and mix with the bean paste, chili paste, and black bean - BTW, use paste made with "broad beans", I've just found a pretty good brand. I think I need to do a version 2 of this.

ed (from Yuma)

OMG, this is a good recipe. I finally got around to making it, and even with my clumsy cookery, I ended up with the best mapo tofu I've ever eaten.

You are right about the black beans in the yellow Quaker Oats type package. They are superb.

Thanks, blogdog, for the recipe!


Hi Ed - Amazingly easy, isn't it? I'm glad you enjoyed the Ma Po Doufu....I've got a lead on some really good Sichuan Hot Bean Paste, so hopefully I'll find some time to follow-up on it.

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