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Salt & Pepper Tofu with Pickled Cucumber

These crispy silken tofu morsels will turn any meat-eater into a tofu-loving mess. Serve with a crisp and fresh pickled cucumber salad to add another dimension to this perfectly balanced meal.

Salt & Pepper Tofu with Pickled Cucumber

Serves 4

⅓ cup rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp caster sugar
½ tsp sesame oil
1 Lebanese cucumber, thinly sliced
1kg silken tofu
1 tbsp white peppercorns
1 tsp schezuan peppercorns
2 tbsp sea salt flakes
⅔ cup plain flour
500ml vegetable oil, for deep frying
1 spring onion, shredded
1 long red chilli, sliced
Japanese mayonnaise, to serve

Schezuan Salt

2 tbsp sea salt flakes
1 tsp schezuan peppercorns, crushed

To make Schezuan salt, combine the ingredients in a bowl. Set aside.
Combine vinegar, sugar and sesame oil in a bowl. When sugar has dissolved, 
add cucumbers. Set aside 
for 20 minutes.

Carefully dry tofu on absorbent paper and cut into large cubes. Crush the peppercorns and salt flakes in a mortar and pestle. Transfer the mixture to a bowl; stir through the flour. Gently mix tofu pieces through the seasoned flour.

Heat the oil in a wok or deep saucepan until it reaches 180°C on a cooking thermometer. Carefully fry the tofu for 4 minutes or until a golden crust forms. Drain on absorbent paper. Sprinkle with spring onion and chilli.
Serve with mayonnaise, pickled cucumbers and schezuan salt immediately.

Tip: Don’t let the tofu sit around; serve immediately as the batter will become soggy.

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