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Spicy Sichuan Tofu and Pork (Mapo Dofu)
This is our take on the Sichuan classic mapo dofu, a braise of tofu and ground pork in a sauce flavored with chili oil and tingling Sichuan peppercorns. Toban djan, a fermented chili-bean paste, supplies much of the bold, savory flavor here; it’s sold in jars in Asian markets. If you can't find it, substitute 1½ tablespoons red miso mixed with 1 tablespoon Asian chili-garlic sauce. You can tone down the heat by omitting the chili oil and using a total of 3 tablespoons peanut oil, but don’t cut back on the toban djan. Serve this dish with steamed rice. Leftovers taste even better, though the tofu will release water, slightly thinning the sauce.
tablespoons chili oil
01In a small bowl, stir together the cornstarch and 1 tablespoon water. In a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high, heat the chili oil and grapeseed oil until shimmering. Add the ginger, garlic, minced scallions and Sichuan peppercorns. Cook, stirring, until the aroma of the garlic and ginger has mellowed slightly but the mixture has not browned, about 2 minutes.
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