Chinese Noodles with Spicy Szechuan Bean Curd
If you master this delicious stir-fry of Asian noodles and spicy tofu, you’ll be less inclined to reach for that Chinese take-out menu!
- 2/3 cup reserved liquid from canned mushrooms and water chestnuts
- 2 tablespoons natural soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch or arrowroot
- 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
- Asian hot sauce, to taste
- 1 pound firm or extra-firm tofu
- 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
- 8 ounces Chinese wheat noodles (or substitute udon noodles or linguine)
- 2 large carrots, peeled and sliced on a diagonal
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 medium green bell pepper, diced
- 1 medium red bell pepper, diced
- 15-ounce can straw mushrooms, liquid reserved
- 8-ounce can sliced water chestnuts, liquid reserved
- 2 to 3 scallions, cut into 1-inch lengths
Combine the ingredients for the sauce in a small mixing bowl and stir together. Set aside until needed.
Cut the tofu into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Blot between clean tea-towels or several layers of paper towel to remove excess moisture. Cut the tofu into 1/2-inch dice.
Heat half of the oil in a wok or stir-fry pan. Sauté the tofu dice over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until most sides are golden. Remove them to a plate until needed.
Cook the noodles in plenty of rapidly simmering water until al dente, then drain.
Meanwhile, heat the remaining oil in the wok or stir-fry pan. Add the carrots and stir-fry over medium-high heat until they begin to turn golden. Add the garlic and bell peppers and continue to stir-fry until they are just tender-crisp.
Add the straw mushrooms, water chestnuts, and scallions. Continue to stir-fry for 2 to 3 minutes longer, or just until everything is well heated through. Stir in the sauce and bring to a simmer, then cook, stirring, until the sauce has thickened.
Gently stir the tofu and cooked noodles into the wok or stir-fry pan and taste to correct the seasonings and spiciness. Serve at once.