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Kung Pao Tofu Recipe

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Kung Pao Tofu

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1 6 oz. block firm tofu, cubed
2 tablespoons peanut oil
2 teaspoons tamari or soy sauce
3 dried red chiles de arbol, seeds removed
1/3 cup unsalted peanuts
1 large large red bell pepper, diced large
1 large green bell pepper, diced large
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 inches fresh ginger, peeled and grated
1/4 cup tamari or soy sauce
1/4 cup filtered water
3 tablespoons rice wine or sherry
1 tablespoon,plus two teaspoons rice vinegar
2 teaspoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 tablespoon corn starch
Jasmine brown rice
Green onions, sliced
Toasted sesame seeds
Additional peanuts


  1. Prepare a batch of brown rice according to package directions.
  2. Cut the tofu into 1/2’ cubes, toss with two teaspoons of tamari or soy sauce to coat them evenly. Heat a wok or skillet to medium high, add two tablespoons of peanut oil. Place the tofu in the hot pan in a single layer and let them brown for 2-3 minutes, flip the cubes to lightly brown them evenly on all sides, about 8-10 minutes, flipping and stirring occasionally. Transfer the browned tofu to a medium bowl and set aside.
  3. Return the wok or skillet to the stove and reduce the heat to medium. Add the peanuts and toast them stirring continuously for 2-3 minutes. Add the dried chilis and continue stirring to toast the chills and peanuts together for an addition 2-3 minutes or until the chilis become fragrant. Transfer them to the bowl with the browned tofu and set aside.
  4. Combine the tamari or soy sauce, filtered water, rice wine or sherry, rice vinegar, brown sugar, sesame oil and cornstarch in a liquid measuring cup, whisk to combine.
  5. Return the wok or skillet to medium heat again. Add an additional tablespoon of peanut oil and sauté the diced red and green bell pepper for 3-4 minutes, add the minced garlic and grated ginger, stir-fry 1-2 more minutes then add the tofu, peanuts, and chilis. Gradually add the sauce, stir until the sauce has thickened then serve over hot brown rice with an additional garnish of chopped green onion, peanuts, and sesame seeds.
  6. Note
  7. Recipe courtesy of Liz Gary. For information about free local community cooking classes and special events visit
Course: Dinner
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