VENISON & MUSHROOM MAPO TOFU
SERVES 4 / PREPARATION 10 MINUTES / COOKING 20 MINUTES
One of my all-time favourite dishes, mapo tofu is already a great example of a ‘less meat’ dish balanced with tofu. I like to cut that amount down even further using lots of chopped mushrooms for maximum taste and texture. I am using lean venison mince, but you could substitute any type of mince.
3 tablespoons peanut oil
1 teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns, ground 150g venison mince
300g mushrooms, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, crushed
5cm piece ginger, grated
2-3 tablespoons chilli bean sauce
(I use Lee Kum Kee brand Toban Djan) 1 tablespoon cornflour
1 tablespoon soy sauce
300g silken tofu, cut into 1cm cubes chopped spring onion or coriander to serve
Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a wok over a medium-high heat. Add the Sichuan peppercorns and cook for about 30 seconds until fragrant, add the venison and stir fry until browned, about 3 minutes. Set aside.
Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil and add the mushrooms and a sprinkle of salt. Stir fry for 5 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger and chilli sauce and cook for 1 minute.
Combine the cornflour with 2 tablespoons of cold water and add to the wok along with 1¼ cups more water and the soy sauce and bring to a simmer. Add the mince back along with the tofu. Gently simmer for 10 minutes, trying not to break up the tofu too much. Serve scattered with chopped spring onion or coriander with rice and steamed greens.
There are so many more ways of reducing your meat intake and upping the plant-based proteins, without sacrificing flavour.