Ma-Po Tofu

Ma-Po Tofu
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This classic spicy Szechuan dish is made healthier with ground turkey and less sodium. Lightly poaching the tofu before stir-frying lends it a beautiful silky texture. Serve with steamed rice or lettuce leaves, plus some extra hot sauce on the side.


  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp hot bean paste (or black bean paste if you prefer less spicy)
  • 1 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 lb regular tofu, drained and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 tsp vegetable oil
  • 1/2 lb ground turkey
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 tbsp fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch dissolved in 2 tbsp water
  • 1 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 2 scallions, chopped

Special equipment: Asian wok or large heavy skillet


  1. Stir together broth, bean paste, soy sauce. Set aside.
  2. Place tofu in a sauce pan and add a small amount of water.  Simmer on low heat while stir-frying other ingredients.
  3. Heat wok over high heat until hot and add oil, swirling to coat. Add turkey and stir-fry, breaking up lumps until no longer pink. Add garlic and ginger and stir-fry over moderate heat until very fragrant, about 2 minutes
  4. Stir reserved sauce, then add to turkey and bring to a simmer. Drain tofu in a large sieve and slide into sauce, stirring gently.
  5. Stir cornstarch mixture and add to stir-fry. Bring to a boil, stirring gently, and cook until thickened and glossy, about 15 seconds.
  6. Turn off heat and sprinkle with sesame oil and 2 tablespoons scallion. Stir once or twice, then serve sprinkled with remaining scallion.

Image: [cipher] via Flickr


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I'm a Canadian mother of two with a passion for food and cooking. I'm increasingly discovering that delicious food can also be healthy! So, I am sharing my favourite recipes with like-minded home cooks. Along the way, I'll also be writing about food-related topics such as gadgets, books and television. Let the culinary adventures begin!

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