Crispy Japanese Tofu Bites

August 11, 2011
4 Ratings
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

This recipe was inspired by the street food of Taiwan, one of my favorite is stinky-tofu: crispy fried at the exterior and an ooze of caramelized soy sauce with ginger and green onion, accompanied with pickled veggies and a dash of chili. Heaven. Of course I've omitted the stinky part and stick to regular tofu. :) —FrancesRen

What You'll Need
  • Caramelized Soy Sauce (Jiang You Gao)
  • 2 tablespoons mirin
  • 1/3 cup light sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons water (adjust for tasting)
  • 2 tablespoons light cane sugar
  • 2 tablespoons grated daikon
  • Composing the Tofu
  • 1 tofu, cut into bite size squares (1.5 in cubes)
  • potato flour or corn starch for coating
  • oil for frying
  • chopped green onion
  • grounded white pepper
  • japanese seven flavor chili pepper (any chili pepper is fine)
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger (for each tofu)
  1. Boil the mirin until the smell of alcohol has evaporated, about 2 min; add the soy sauce and water until boiling, add the sugar and let it simmer in the lowest fire until it is reduced and syrupy, about 5-8 minutes. Dab a drop onto tongue and adjust with a tsp of water at a time if it is too salty, take off heat and let it cool completely; add the grated daikon and mixing it well, set aside.
  2. Cut the tofu block into cubes; wrap around layers of paper towels and let it sit from 30-60minutes. The paper towel should be well-soaked. In the meantime, grate ginger, and chop green onions, setting it aside.
  3. Heat 1 inch of oil in a pan until 375; coat the tofu generously in potato starch and fry it until all sides are golden brown. Delicately scoop out the middle of the tofu and set aside for future use if desired. Gently put a tsp of grated ginger in the middle, a tsp of caramelized soy sauce mix, topped it generously with green onion, grounded white pepper and chili pepper. Option: serve with a side of pickled cabbage and a dash of red chili sauce.
  4. Enjoy the oozing bite!
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10 Reviews

Misheru M. March 14, 2016
Do you think if I fried the tofu, and used the caramelized soy as a sauce over the tofu with some steamed veggies, and possibly some rice, would that be good? Or would the sauce be too overpowering?
JayKayTee December 15, 2011
The ingredients specify potato flour yet the directions specify potato starch. These aren't the sam things are they?
salmoncandy November 18, 2011
I am personally crazy for Tofu...My family also loves it! Thank you for sharing such a gem.
FrancesRen November 21, 2011
Anytime! :)
Marisa A. September 9, 2011
This recipe made me go from an onlooker of Food52 to a subscriber. Had to sign up to email the recipe to myself and in all the times I've swooned over recipes here, I've never had such a powerpunch drive to devour a recipe so quickly. Thanks!
FrancesRen September 15, 2011
That is such a compliment-- happy you enjoyed the recipe and (sorry for such a late reply)!!!
sygyzy August 19, 2011
Can you specify what type of tofu to use? I assume semi-firm or firm?
FrancesRen August 20, 2011
Frontalgirl August 13, 2011
I'm always interested in using tofu. This looks delicious!
FrancesRen August 14, 2011
thank you! :)