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There’s this restaurant in New York’s Lower East Side called Congee Village that I sometime’s frequent for delicious bowls of Chinese congee with all the fixings as well as an order of their special “Bean Curd with Soy Sauce” dish. That dish (in addition to it being named just that) is as simple as it sounds—a bit of silken soft tofu and some soy sauce, and yet it has got to be one of my favorite restaurant dishes of the city. Keeps me coming back.
I had planned to make a visit there this past weekend but instead serendipitously made a last minute trip to Boston, thus leaving my tofu craving unfulfilled. Cue Sunday night dinner and this dish was born, featuring ultra soft lightly pan-seared silken tofu in a bed of scallion and garlic soy sauce. I can’t say this recipe is an exact replica, but I can say that it is simple and oh-so delicious!
I rarely work with soft silken tofu for cooking. Unlike the typical firm and extra firm tofu styles reserved for stir-fry’s and crispy crusts, the silken variety is incredibly soft and fragile (as one might expect), which makes it difficult for cooking. Its delicate creaminess makes it a great candidate for dairy substitutes in desserts like smoothies, but its that same creaminess that makes it so tasty in this dish if it actually stays together! I did my best to exercise great care in handling the delicate tofu slices and reaped the rewards in the end! Just be sure to get the oil nice and hot before adding the tofu; this will prevent the tofu from excessively sticking to the pan and help develop a nicely crisp sear!
What favorite restaurant dishes have you tried replicating and home? Happy cooking and thanks for stopping by… I’d love to hear from you so please leave your thoughts and comments below! -pfht