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Blogging Marathon# 52: Week 3/ Day 2

Theme: Weekend Special Dinners

Dish: General Tso’s Tofu

Today’s weekend special is a Chinese-American dish called General Tso’s Tofu. It is the vegetarian version of General Tso’s Chicken that is quite a popular item on Chinese fast food and restaurant menus in America and Canada. From what I read, this dish is unknown in China and is probably been introduced by one of the many Chinese chefs who came to America years ago.

In the original version, it is a sweet, slightly spicy and the chicken is deep fried. In this vegetarian version, tofu is used instead of the meat and it is baked until crispy.

The sauce is what makes this dish special. It is slightly sweet, slightly spicy and has lot of flavor. I would suggest starting with the quantities listed below in the recipe, then taste and adjust them as per your taste. Add more sambal oelek chili paste to make it spicy or add more sugar etc.

The dish needs a bit of preparation — tofu needs to be pressed for 30 minutes and then marinated for at least 30 minutes to even overnight. So plan accordingly. I prepped the tofu and left it to marinate on Saturday morning and it was ready to be baked at night, making it our ‘special’ weekend dinner 🙂

I served it with Shanghai Fried Rice, but it would taste great with plain white or brown rice. Steamed broccoli is a great side to this dish.

Recipe from Vegetarian Times:

Print Recipe
General Tso's Tofu Yum
General Tso's Tofu -- It is the vegetarian version of General Tso's Chicken that is quite a popular item on Chinese fast food and restaurant menus in America and Canada.
General Tso's Tofu
Course main course
Cuisine chinese
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Passive Time 30 minutes
Servings
serving
Ingredients
Crispy Tofu:
  • 1 16 oz firm Tofu Firm or Extra- - . pkg, drained
  • 2 tsp Soy sauce Low sodium
  • 2 tsp Rice Vinegar
  • 1 tsp Rice Wine (or Mirin)
  • 1 tsp Oil
  • 1 cloves Garlic , finely minced
  • ½ Ginger " piece, finely grated
  • 1 tbsp Cornstarch
For the Sauce:
  • ½ cup vegetable broth Low sodium
  • 2 tbsp Sugar
  • tbsps Soy sauce Low sodium
  • 4 tsp Rice Wine (Mirin)
  • 2 tsp Rice Vinegar
  • 2 tsp Sesame Oil
  • 2 tsp Corn Starch
  • tsps Tomato paste
  • ½ tsp Sambal Oelek chili paste (optional)
  • 2 tsp Oil
  • 4 Green Onions - green parts chopped
  • 1 clove Garlic `, finely minced
  • ½ Ginger " - finely grated
Accompaniments:
  • 2 cups Broccoli
  • 2 cups Brown Rice White or - (I made Shanghai Fried Rice)
Course main course
Cuisine chinese
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Passive Time 30 minutes
Servings
serving
Ingredients
Crispy Tofu:
  • 1 16 oz firm Tofu Firm or Extra- - . pkg, drained
  • 2 tsp Soy sauce Low sodium
  • 2 tsp Rice Vinegar
  • 1 tsp Rice Wine (or Mirin)
  • 1 tsp Oil
  • 1 cloves Garlic , finely minced
  • ½ Ginger " piece, finely grated
  • 1 tbsp Cornstarch
For the Sauce:
  • ½ cup vegetable broth Low sodium
  • 2 tbsp Sugar
  • tbsps Soy sauce Low sodium
  • 4 tsp Rice Wine (Mirin)
  • 2 tsp Rice Vinegar
  • 2 tsp Sesame Oil
  • 2 tsp Corn Starch
  • tsps Tomato paste
  • ½ tsp Sambal Oelek chili paste (optional)
  • 2 tsp Oil
  • 4 Green Onions - green parts chopped
  • 1 clove Garlic `, finely minced
  • ½ Ginger " - finely grated
Accompaniments:
  • 2 cups Broccoli
  • 2 cups Brown Rice White or - (I made Shanghai Fried Rice)
General Tso's Tofu
Instructions
  1. To make Crispy Tofu:Cut tofu into 2 slabs. Wrap tofu slabs in paper towel and place between 2 cutting boards. Put some weight like soup cans or cast iron pan, on top of the cutting board and press for 30 minutes (or up to 4 hours).
  2. In a resealable container, combine soy sauce, vinegar, mirin, oil, garlic and ginger. Add tofu and toss to coat. Marinate for at least 30 minutes or overnight.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350°F and coat a baking sheet with cooking spray.
  4. Sift cornstarch over tofu and turn to coat evenly. Spread tofu on baking sheet.
  5. Baking 30~40 minutes or until firm and crispy, turning several times to brown all sides.
  6. To make General Tso's Sauce: Whisk together broth, sugar, soy sauce, mirin, vinegar, sesame oil, corn starch, tomato paste, sambal oelek (if using) in a small bowl. Set aside.
  7. Heat 1tbsp oil in a wok or large skillet over medium-high heat. Add green onions, garlic and ginger, stir fry 1 minute. Add broth mixture and cook for 1 more minute, or until thickened.
  8. Stir in tofu. Mix well and cook for 1~2 minutes.
  9. Serve with steamed broccoli and rice.
Recipe Notes

Lets check out what my fellow marathoners have cooked today for BM# 52.

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12 thoughts on “General Tso’s Tofu”

  1. That’s a very tempting meal! A lot of work on a weekend Pavani:) i am rather lazy to cook so much on weekends:(

  2. this is one of my fave chinese fast food dishes and I love the way you styled the second to last pic the broccoli looks so real

  3. this is one of my fave chinese fast food dishes and I love the way you styled the second to last pic the broccoli looks so real

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