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Salt and Pepper Tofu

4 to 6 Servings

30 minutes

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Instead of deep-frying, a common cooking technique to make Chinese salt and pepper tofu, we coat the pieces of tofu with seasoned cornstarch, then pan-fry them in batches to brown and crisp the exteriors. In the empty skillet, a punchy mix of garlic, fresh chili and scallions is quickly cooked, and the tofu is tossed back in. The finished dish is sauceless but incredibly flavorful from the savory bits that cling to the tofu’s crisped surfaces.

4 to 6


30 minutes


  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper

  • ¼

    teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder (optional)


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Robert C.
March 19, 2023
A Keeper
I saw the episode on television last night. I have been working with tofu lately, and the simplicity of this recipe struck me. My son also likes crispy tofu, but won’t eat anything spicy, so I swapped out the hot pepper with small bell pepper, and excluded the 5 Spice Chinese blend. This was remarkable. We both wanted more when we finished. Another simple recipe full of flavor.
Amy T.
February 17, 2023
Fast and flavourful
This comes together fast and is full of big flavours. The only change I made was adding ginger with the scallions.
Neal B.
February 19, 2023
Good but...
It was a good recipe but we've made several other Tofu recipes from milk street that I would make again before this one.
Rakesh P.
January 16, 2023
loved it. so simple to make, would go little low on salt, paneer can bee used instead of the tofu