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Let’s eat mapo tofu!

Do you love Sichuan style mapo tofu? Authentic Sichuan style mapo tofu (simplified Chinese:麻婆豆腐) is one of the branding dishes of Szechuan cuisine. It is one of the most popular classic Sichuan dishes and one of the top ten famous Chinese dishes. It is spicy, numbing, hot, aromatic and tender. At Chinese food restaurants, the best serving way with mapo tofu is with steamed rice. Mapo tofu enjoys a high popularity among not only Chinese people but also many western countries.

Doubanjiang (simplified Chinese:豆瓣酱) is the soul of Sichuan cuisine. It is also known as broad bean paste. Doubanjiang is the essential ingredient for Sichuan style mapo tofu.  Authentic Szechuan doubanjiang is full of flavor after long time of fermentation.

Many people love having mapo tofu for lunch or dinner. Sometimes the dinners double the meat and/or the sauce. Also, a handful of greens (mustard greens or spinach) can be added at the end of braising. This will create a more nutritious and balanced meal. Besides, if you want to cut calories, you can replace the ground pork with ground turkey.

At the very beginning, mapo tofu was named after its creator. It is said that there is a couple who own a restaurant mainly selling vegetarian dishes. The wife and cook gets some pock on her face. Her tofu dishes are very popular among the diners. However some diners told her that they want to eat some meat rather than just tofu. So she bought some beef, cut it to granules and added the beef into her tofu dish. Then the tofu dish with beef became more popular and her diners gave the name: Mapo tofu.

Mapo Tofu can be found in almost any Chinese restaurant around the world. Nowadays, along with the popularity of this dish, there are hundreds of variations adapting the piquant original to suit local tastes. Besides, mapo has becomes a kind of flavor which has also been used in other dishes. From the consideration of healthiness, tofu or bean curd is considered as one of the most nourishing cooking ingredients. There are many types of tofu products on market, including soft tofu, firm tofu, tofu skin and dried tofu etc. Definitely, the cooking methods actually depend on the texture of the ingredients. For marinating, soft tofu is better than firm tofu. Firm tofu is more suitable than soft tofu for stir-frying and deep frying.

For special diets, the diners can make it less spicy and skip the rice. Also, the diners can make it into a vegan dish by replacing the meat with mushrooms. For vegetarians, you can just skip the minced pork or beef. Moreover, another choice is to replace the meat with mushrooms either dried or fresh ones to enhance the flavor. As for the last advice, the yummiest mapo tofu can be eaten perfectly with several bowls of steamed rice. 

If you are interested in having a taste of Sichuan food and love the flavor of spiciness and numbness, let’s visit the best Chinese restaurants in Twin Cities and order mapo tofu. Grand Szechuan Restaurant is highly recommended to you. It is a Sichuan food dining restaurant in Bloomington, Minnesota. Grand Szechuan Restaurant boasts seasoned Szechuan food chefs and serves authentic Sichuan food. You will surely love mapo tofu or any other Sichuan dishes they serve!

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