This recipe is really all about the Crispy Black Bean Tofu. The noodle bowl component is optional but yummy. You could just as easily make this with rice, or just make the tofu to go alongside a bigger dinner with other side dishes.
You'll need extra firm tofu for the best results, and the trick is to really put loads of flavour into the tofu, so first you have to start out by squeezing it out well. I like to chop my tofu into slices, then wrap in clean tea towels & put a heavy board on it. This speeds up the process. Chopping the tofu into slices rather than trying to squeeze out a whole block is faster and safer than balancing a load of heavy things on a wobbly block of tofu.
Then all you need to do is marinate the tofu for at least half an hour. If you're organised, marinating it overnight is an even better option, so all that lovely umami flavour from the Black Bean sauce really soaks in. I buy my black bean sauce from a big Asian food supply store, but you can also get it in pretty much any supermarket.
Once you're ready to cook your tofu, it gets a coating of corn starch (for the crispy outer!) and needs a hot wok to shallow fry it.
Then, once you have fried your tofu, you use the leftover marinade for the noodle sauce! Nifty and thrifty.
The noodles themselves can be whatever kind of noodle floats your boat. Udon, wheat or rice noods are all good. Make sure you choose some yummy crunchy veggies too. Green beans, red peppers or carrot are all delicious. Some scallions or spring onions are also a great addition. You could also use broccoli, asparagus or pretty much any crunchy veggie that you fancy.
To finish, a sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds is a great option, or just eat as it is..
So what goes into making the Crispy Black Bean Tofu?
- Extra Firm Tofu- Make sure you get the firm one, not the silken variety
- Black Bean Sauce - this is a yummy fermented black bean sauce.
- Chinese Black Vinegar
- Soya Sauce
- Cornstarch (In UK we call cornstarch cornflour: same thing - you can get it in the baking section of your supermarket)
- And for the noodles: noodles, & whatever crunchy veggies you like!
See below for step by step instructions.
We hope you make our yummy Crispy Black Bean Tofu Noodle Bowl. If you do, please rate the recipe & let us know in the comments below!
(If you like the sound of this recipe.. check out our other quick & easy recipes)
Crispy Black Bean Tofu Noodle Bowl
For the Crispy Black Bean Tofu
- 200 g firm tofu
- 2 Tbsp Black Bean Sauce
- 1 Tbsp Chinese Black Vinegar I
- 1 Tbsp Soy Sauce
- 3 Tbsp cornstarch (In the UK cornstarch is called cornflour)
- 4-5 Tbsp oil for frying. Use a neutral oil like sunflower or rapeseed
For the Noodle Bowl
- 300 g pre-cooked noodles Either buy ready made, or follow the instructions to cook a portion prior to making the bowl.
- 1 carrot cut into batons
- ½ red pepper cut into thing slices
- 6 spring onions chopped into 3 cm lengths
- 50 g green beans a handful, chopped into 3cm lengths
- the leftover marinade from the tofu
For the Crispy Blackbean Tofu
- Press the tofu by slicing it & sandwiching it between teatowels. Put something heavy on it & leave for half an hour-overnight.
- In a sealable container, mix together the Blackbean Sauce, Soya Sauce & Black Vinegar
- Dice the tofu and add to the container with the marinade. Give it a shake to distribut the marinade evenly
- Leave to marinade for at least half an hour. The longer you leave it, the tastier it will be!
- To cook the tofu, heat the oil in a wok. You want it hot so it sizzles
- Open up your container and add the cornstarch. Close the lid and shake it so that the cornstarch evenly coats the tofu
- Add a single piece of the tofu to the wok. If it sizzles, it's ready to cook with.
- Add the rest of the tofu in batches, removing them once crispy to a clean paper towel to drain.
- Don't throw away the rest of the marinade! You need it for the noodles!
For the noodles
- Once you have cooked the tofu, wipe out the wok with a paper towel.
- Add all the veggies so they sizzle and start to cook
- Add 2-3 tablespoons of water to the container you marinated the tofu in. Give it a swish.
- Add the noodles to the wok, and the contents of the marinade container. Cook for a minute or two.
- Distrubute the noodles onto your plates, and top with the crispy tofu.