RECIPE: Vegan Japanese Sweet and Sour Koya Dofu Stir Fry

RECIPE: Vegan Japanese Sweet and Sour Koya Dofu Stir Fry

This vegan stir fry includes koya dofu which has been coated in an umami rich ginger and garlic soy sauce and combined with fresh vegetables in a sweet and sour sauce.

Servings: 2-3 persons

Ingredients:

  • 100g Koya Dofu
  • 4 tbsp oil for frying
  • ½ carrots
  • ½ onions
  • ½ red pepper
  • 1½ yellow pepper
  • 1 green pepper
  • 1 tbsp potato starch

Coating

  • 1 tbsp finely chopped ginger
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped garlic
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch

For the sweet and sour sauce

  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp ketchup
  • 2 tbsp vinegar
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 70ml dashi

Instructions:

RECIPE: Vegan Japanese Sweet and Sour Koya Dofu Stir Fry
  1. Place the koya dofu in a bowl and pour in hot water, this will rehydrate the Koya tofu. Let it sit for 10-15 minutes.
RECIPE: Vegan Japanese Sweet and Sour Koya Dofu Stir Fry
  1. Meanwhile, wash the vegetables and cut them into slices of different sizes. They don't have to be exact, but we recommend cutting the same vegetables into similar sizes so that they cook evenly.
  2. Drain the koya dofu and wash it under cold water. Squeeze it like a sponge to remove excess water. Proceed with caution during this process! Koya dofu will have absorbed most of the boiling water so you may burn your hand.
  3. Once the excess water has been squeezed out, put koya dofu in a plastic bag with the ingredients from the Coating. Close the bag and stir the contents, almost as if we were massaging it vigorously, for 2-3 minutes. This will create a thin, tasty coating around the cubes.
RECIPE: Vegan Japanese Sweet and Sour Koya Dofu Stir Fry
  1. In a frying pan, heat the 4 tbsp of oil and fry the coated koya dofu cubes. Make sure they are well spaced out or they will stick (potato starch has a strong 'glue' effect).
  2. Fry them for 3 minutes on each side until lightly browned (pay attention to not burn them or the dish will taste bitter).
RECIPE: Vegan Japanese Sweet and Sour Koya Dofu Stir Fry
  1. When they are ready, remove them from the pan and let them rest on baking paper so that they release some of the excess oil.
  2. In the same pan, using the leftover oil, which in the meantime will have been lightly flavored with garlic and ginger, cook the vegetables. Start with the carrots and onions, then the red and yellow peppers and lastly the green peppers (we leave them for last, so they keep their consistency). Cook for 5-6 minutes, stirring occasionally with a spatula and taking care not to burn them. Note: In traditional recipes, it is advisable to fry each vegetable separately in plenty of oil, but to prevent the dish from being too heavy, we suggest adding another two tablespoons of oil only if necessary.
RECIPE: Vegan Japanese Sweet and Sour Koya Dofu Stir Fry
  1. Once cooked, remove the vegetables and place them on absorbent paper to remove excess oil.
  2. For the sweet and sour sauce, in a bowl, add all the listed sauces and mix them.
  3. Using a paper towel, remove the excess oil from the pan and place it on low heat. Add the cooked koya dofu and vegetables and fry together for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the sweet and sour sauce and stir everything together with the help of a spatula. Once stirred, you will notice that the sauce is still liquid and tends not to "stick" to the ingredients. Now is the time to thicken it.
  5. Turn off the heat, wait 1 minute and, using a strainer, add 1 tbsp of potato starch and sprinkle it over the entire surface of the dish. Stir with the help of a wooden spoon and your dish is ready.
RECIPE: Vegan Japanese Sweet and Sour Koya Dofu Stir Fry

Notes:

You can use your favourite combinations of vegetables! Potatoes, satsumaimo (Japanese sweet potato), renkon and courgettes are also ideal.

It is important to add the potato starch when the flame is off as there is a risk of lumps forming.

Recipes courtesy of Eleonora Badellino of Daidokoro Labo. You can find her at www.elydream.com and @everydayobento 

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