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!

Serves: 4


  • 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.

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1 Comment

  • Reply
    May 8, 2012 at 10:21 pm

    When pressing firm and extra firm tofu, I like to use a tofu press like the EZ Tofu Press. Its fast, about 5-15 min and it gets all the water out. This allows the flavors to be absorbed and improves the texture!

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