Thai style stir fried tofu with basil is one of the most favored recipe from my blog, was most pinned ever and most loved one. Lightly fried tofu are slathered generously in sambal olek ,the hot Malaysian sauce which makes everything looks scrumptious and appetizing, lavish drizzle of sesame oil infuses such nice aroma to the dish that you will return to this beautiful hot chili tofu again and again. A sure winner for all vegans.
This recipe of tofu chili has been greatly influenced by the time and moments I had spent in the beautiful country of Thailand. But while making this dish I was challenged by the availability of the few indigenous ingredients required to give this dish an authentic touch as best as possible.
Hence, I have used many substitutions here, sambal olek in place of bird chili paste, and Italian basil in place of Thai basil. I know that’s unpardonable, but joy of enjoying good food supersedes the minute nuances of cooking by the book. I believe if you put your heart in any dish, or any work for that matter, it is bound to touch your soul.
That’s the magic of love. Have you checked our Pad Thai Noodles?
“Mulling over the notion of “cooked with love,” or “made with love.” Can “Love” influence the result of cooking? If so, how? Is it measurable? ” that’s how the thread started on social network forum, opinions poured in, some reveals that they use love potion in their cooking, some begged to differ and others streamed the discussion to a different channel. This made me thinking that though we often used the term loosely to some extent but does it really influenced our cooking in any way ?
I was of the opinion that ” I think cooked with love may also meant – that the chef / or the person has taken utmost care to dish out something nice which could be enjoyed by the people. When you cooked something good, with love, care and devotion, that’s makes cooking relaxing rather than a chore.”
The idea was to use Thai bird chillies but here no grocer seems to stock them, even the oriental ones too. So I replaced the bird chillies , from where the Thai food derives its heat, with sambal olek , a South Asian chilli paste used mainly in Malaysian cuisine and I must say no regrets at all.
Thai cuisine is close to my heart and while vacationing in Thailand, I had fallen in love with the Tom Kha Kai / Thai Chicken Coconut Soup. Please check that one, it is so soul satisfying. So as the Thai Style Sago Pudding / Tapioca Pearl Pudding.
- 1 box Firm tofu
- 1 Shallots, finely chopped
- 3 tbsp Thai bird chillies, substitute with sambal olek ,adjust to your taste
- 1 tbsp Garlic minced
- 1-2 tbsp Crushed peanuts
- 1 Red bell peppers, diced (optional)
- 1 tbsp Dark soy sauce
- Thai Basil, a large handful
- 1 tsp White pepper
- 1/4 cup Stock / water
- Oil for stir frying as required
- Salt and sugar to taste
- Seasoned sesame oil to drizzle
- Cut the firm tofu into cubes, finely chopped the shallots, and minced the garlic.
- Heat the oil in a wok and add the garlic, shallots and chilli paste (sambal olek) and saute them for few seconds.
- Add the crushed peanuts, red bell pepper and tofu. Stir fried them for 10- 15 seconds.
- Add the dark soy sauce, white pepper powder, fry for couple of seconds and add the water / stock.
- Stir fried them for couple of more minutes until the sauce thickens a bit.
- Adjust the seasonings, tear some basil leaves and add it to the wok.
- Wait until the basil wilted, drizzle some seasoned sesame oil over it and take it off the heat.
- Serve the stir fried tofu on a bed of steamed jasmine rice or enjoy it with noodles.
- Quick notes
- This dish meant to be hot, so if you are serving it with steamed rice, make it little extra hot to go with the neutral flavour of rice.
This is absolutely vegan recipe but you can always add some sliced chicken to it.
Tofu stir fried is simple, can be prepared in jiffy if you have some good South Asian condiments in your pantry, that helps, and you will also need a large handful of Thai basil, the flavour of basil makes it more enticing. Dig in it with your chopsticks ! yummm…its hot !
Looking for more Thai flavours. Do check this Tilapia fish dunked in Thai mango sauce, another our hot favourite at home.
Want to visit Thailand? Please read our travelogue here – Amazing Thailand