Stir-Fried Tofu, Shiitakes, and Asparagus

Firm tofu keeps its shape during cooking, and so it's the best choice for stir-fries. On its own, it's rather mild, but once added to the dish, tofu acts as a sponge, absorbing the savory flavors of the sauce.

Slideshow:More Tofu Recipes

  • Servings: 4

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  • 1 1/2 pounds asparagus
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 pound shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and caps sliced, or white mushrooms, sliced
  • 3/4 cup chicken stock, or canned low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 5 teaspoons white-wine vinegar
  • 3/4 teaspoon Asian sesame oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 pounds firm tofu, cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds (optional)

How to make this recipe

  1. Snap off the tough ends of the asparagus and discard them. Cut the asparagus into 1-inch lengths. In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the asparagus for 3 minutes. Drain. In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch and water.

  2. In a wok or large frying pan, heat the oil over moderately high heat. Add the garlic. Stir-fry until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the onion and stir-fry until softened, about 3 minutes. Add the sliced mushrooms and stir-fry until brown, about 5 minutes.

  3. Stir in the stock, soy sauce, 3 teaspoons of the vinegar, the sesame oil, and the salt. Simmer for 2 minutes. Stir the cornstarch mixture, add it to the pan, and simmer until the sauce has thickened. Add the tofu and simmer for 3 minutes. Add the asparagus and simmer until hot, about 2 minutes longer. Stir in the remaining 2 teaspoons vinegar. Serve topped with the sesame seeds.

Suggested Pairing

Try a California or New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. It has the acidity and character to deal with asparagus's strong flavor, and works well with the Asian ingredients here.

Published February 2013

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