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Pechay with Crisp Tofu

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Many of my friends and family have been eating meatless meals this Lent season and have asked me for meat-free recipes. So, I cooked Pechay with Crisp Tofu to share with you. Or if you’re in need of a refreshing, lighter meal, this might be the one.

This is the easiest stir fry vegetable recipe to make. You  first deep fry the tofu or tokwa, as we call it in the Philippines.

Tokwa or tofu has a meaty texture and is a good addition to Asian stir fries, noodles, soups, stews, hot pots or the like. Nutrition experts have cited its nutritional value. You can also use pre-fried tofu cubes, which are sold in Asian markets. I used pechay or bok choy. You can substitute with other leafy greens.

The stir fry is flavored with a few tablespoons of rich, salty oyster sauce. To neutralize the saltiness, I added a bit of sugar. After a few minutes of frying and stirring, dinner was done.

This was the perfectly easy dish to satisfy our hunger, during this past emotionally-charged week for us Asians in America. The rise in crimes against Asians here in the United States has left many of us Filipinos, scared and horrified. We may have far to go on the issues of racism, but we can move forward, onward. I am proud to see our younger generation of Asian Americans so much braver, so much more involved, and prouder of their roots. We need to continue speaking up about who we are as Asians and Filipino Americans, our role, and our contributions to this country.

Meanwhile, put a heaping serving of this Pechay with Crisp Tofu on a mound of piping-hot, steamed rice. It will be the balm for the pain of this past week.

Pechay with Crisp Tofu

Pechay with Crisp Tofu is an Asian stir-fried dish with green, leafy pechay as Filipinos call what is Bok Choy here in America. The sliced vegetables are combined with crisp, deep-fried tofu cubes and flavored with the saltiness of rich oyster sauce, sweetened with a bit of sugar. This recipe was inspired by Omnivore Cooking. Serves 2
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time15 mins
Course: Dinner, Lunch, Side Dish
Cuisine: Asian, Filipino
Keyword: Pechay Crisp Tofu
Servings: 2 people
Calories: 370kcal
Author: Asian in America - Elizabeth Ann Quirino

Equipment

  • Large wok or skillet (12 to 14 inches diameter)

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 block (16 oz.) extra firm tofu
  • cup cornstarch, to coat tofu
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 whole white or yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 stalks scallion whites, sliced
  • 3 cups coarsely chopped pechay or Bok Choy; slice off and discard tough end
  • 2 Tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 stalks scallion greens, chopped, for garnish

For serving:

  • steamed rice

Instructions

To prepare tofu

  • Drain and discard the liquid from the tofu in the package.
    Coat the entire block of tofu with the cornstarch evenly.
    In a large skillet or wok, add the vegetable oil. Over medium-high heat, when oil is hot enough (about 350 F degrees), using a turner, carefully place the block of tofu.
    Deep fry each side for about 4 to 5 minutes till brown. Turn the tofu block only once to fry the other side evenly.
    When tofu is brown, remove from the skillet. Drain on parchment paper to remove extra grease. Cut tofu into 2-inch large cubes. Set aside.

To stir fry:

  • Discard the oil used to fry the tofu.
    Leave only about 2 tablespoons for the stir fry in the same skillet.
    Over medium heat, add the garlic, onions and scallion greens.
    After 1 to 2 minutes, add the chopped pechay to the skillet. Mix ingredients.
  • In a separate small bowl, combine the oyster sauce and sugar. Mix well.
    Add this oyster sauce mixture to the vegetables in the skillet. Pour the oyster sauce mixture all over.
    Season with sesame oil.
    Continue cooking for about 2 to 3 minutes till the pechay leaves are wilted.
  • Return the crisp, deep-fried tofu cubes to the skillet with the stir fried pechay.
    Combine the tofu and pechay gently.
    Serve warm with steamed rice.

Cook's comments:

  • I prefer to deep fry the entire block of extra firm tofu before cutting into cubes. That way, the tofu doesn't crumble.
    Oyster sauce is a Chinese condiment made from oysters, water and salt. It is a multipurpose seasoning for many Asian dishes. It has a thick consistency and is quite salty in flavor. When I use oyster sauce as an ingredient I find there is no need to add salt to the dish.

Copyright Notice:

  • Notes on Nutrition: The nutrition information provided  in the recipe links is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.
    Copyright Notice: Hello, Friends! Please DO NOT LIFT OR PLAGIARIZE Asian in America recipes on this blog,  my original recipes, stories, photos or videos. All the images and content on this blog are COPYRIGHT PROTECTED and owned by my media company Besa-Quirino LLC by Elizabeth Ann Quirino. This means BY LAW you are NOT allowed to copy, scrape, lift, frame, plagiarize or use my photos, essays, stories and recipe content on your websites, books, films, television shows, videos, without my permission. If you wish to republish this recipe or content on media outlets mentioned above, please ASK MY PERMISSION, or re-write it in your own words and link back to my blog AsianInAmericaMag.com to give proper attribution. It is the legal thing to do. Thank you. Email me at [email protected]

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 370kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 23g | Sodium: 617mg | Potassium: 315mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 2mg

Notes on Nutrition: The nutrition information provided  in the recipe links is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.

Copyright Notice: Hello, Friends! Please DO NOT LIFT OR PLAGIARIZE Asian in America recipes on this blog,  my original recipes, stories, photos or videos. All the images and content on this blog are COPYRIGHT PROTECTED and owned by my media company Besa-Quirino LLC by Elizabeth Ann Quirino. This means BY LAW you are NOT allowed to copy, scrape, lift, frame, plagiarize or use my photos, essays, stories and recipe content on your websites, books, films, television shows, videos, without my permission. If you wish to republish this recipe or content on media outlets mentioned above, please ASK MY PERMISSION, or re-write it in your own words and link back to my blog AsianInAmericaMag.com to give proper attribution. It is the legal thing to do. Thank you. Email me at [email protected]

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