Silken Comfort Tofu

By Abra Bennett
January 1, 2010
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Author Notes: This is a spicy and comforting dish I created in the spirit of eating more meatless meals. It's a perfect dish for a cold winter's day, and a great antidote to holiday overindulgence. Do try to find Chinese peanut oil, which adds a great toasty flavor to the dish.Abra Bennett

Food52 Review: As Jenny notes in the related article, don't be discouraged if you don’t have all the ingredients exactly as written, the dish will be delicious regardless. In the photo above we added some shelled edamame for a little color.Food52

Serves: 2, as a main course
Prep time: 5 min
Cook time: 10 min

  • 1 tablespoon peanut oil, Chinese if possible
  • 2 shallots, sliced thin
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon Chinese chili-garlic sauce
  • 1/4 cup fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon natural peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup hot water
  • 1 teaspoon sugar (optional)
  • 1 pound silken tofu, cubed
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 cup basil chiffonade, use Thai basil if possible
  • chili oil for drizzling
  1. Heat the peanut oil in a large skillet and saute shallots until golden. Add sliced garlic and sizzle briefly. Add chili-garlic sauce and fry until fragrant. Add fish sauce and sizzle until nearly evaporated. Stir in peanut butter, so mixture forms a rough paste. Whisk in hot water (and sugar, if using)—the consistency of the mixture should be between a thick sauce and a loose paste.
  2. Gently stir in the tofu, trying to keep cubes intact as much as possible, Stir in green onions, cilantro, and basil and heat through. Drizzle with chili oil and serve with brown or basmati rice.

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