Mapo Tofu

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Mapo Tofu

Alternative names Mapo Dou Fu
Pinyin Ma Po Dou Fu
Type Stir-fried
Course Main Course
Place of origin China
Region or state Sichuan
Other Cooking time:


Mapo Tofu (Simplified Chinese: 麻婆豆腐; Traditional Chinese: 麻婆豆腐; Pinyin: Málà dòufu;). Mapo Tofu can be found in nearly any Chinese restaurant around the world with hundreds of variations adapting the piquant original to suit local tastes. This dish can also be called the Mapo Doufu. Mapo Tofu is a traditional Sichuan Cuisine Dish, is consisted of tofu set in a spicy sauce, typically a thin, oily, and bright red suspension, based on douban (fermented broadbean and chili paste) and douchi (fermented black beans), along with minced meat, usually pork or beef. Variations exist with other ingredients such as water chestnuts, onions, other vegetables, or wood ear fungus.

"Ma" stands for "ma-zi" (Chinese: mázi, 麻子) which means pockmarks. "Po" is the first syllable of "popo" (Chinese: 婆婆, pópo) which means an old woman or grandma. Hence, mapo is an old woman whose face is pockmarked. It is thus sometimes translated as "pockmarked grandma's beancurd".


The taste is unique and the taste is smooth.

Authentic mapo doufu is powerfully spicy with both conventional "heat" spiciness and the characteristic málà (numbing spiciness) flavor of Sichuan cuisine.

The feel of the particular dish is often described by cooks using seven specific Chinese adjectives: má 麻 (numbing), là 辣 (spicy hot), tāng 烫 (hot temperature), xiān 鲜 (fresh), nèn 嫩 (tender and soft), xiāng 香 (aromatic), and sū 酥 (flaky).

The authentic form of the dish is increasingly easy to find outside China today, but usually only in Sichuanese restaurants that do not adapt the dish for non-Sichuanese tastes.

The most important and necessary ingredients in the dish that give it the distinctive flavour are chili broad bean paste (salty bean paste) from Sichuan's Pixian county (郫县豆瓣酱), fermented black beans, chili oil, chili flakes of the heaven-facing pepper (朝天辣椒), Sichuan peppercorns, garlic, green onions, and rice wine.

Supplementary ingredients include water or stock, sugar (depending on the saltiness of the bean paste brand used), and starch (if it is desired to thicken the sauce).


Calories (kcal) 126.17 (Per 100 grams)

Carbohydrate (g) 5.37 (Per 100 grams)

Fat (g) 8.90 (Per 100 grams)

Protein (g) 6.35 (Per 100 grams)

Cellulose (g) 0.53 (Per 100 grams)


Mapo Tofu (Ma Po Dou Fu) is estimated to be 126 kcal per 100 grams of calories.

In Chinese

Simplified Chinese: 麻婆豆腐;

Traditional Chinese: 麻婆豆腐;

Pinyin: má pó dòu fǔ;


Legend has it that in Qing Dynasty, there was an old woman named Chen Po, who runned a tofu business. She was so good at making tofu and therefore had a flourishing business that other tofu makers and restaurants owners envied her and made her a discriminative name "Ma Po". Chen Po is aware of their slander, but she decided to focus on her business. One day she accidently invented a new way of cooking tofu, and the dish was so delicious that it became so famous over the place.


Mapo doufu can also be found in restaurants in other Chinese provinces as well as in Japan and Korea where the flavor is adapted to local tastes.

In the west, the dish is often greatly changed, with its spiciness severely toned down to widen its appeal.

This happens particularly in Chinese restaurants not specialising in Sichuan cuisine. In American Chinese cuisine, the dish is often made without meat to appeal to vegetarians, using shiitakes or other edible mushrooms as substitutes to meat, as with very little spice, a thick sweet-and-sour sauce, and added vegetables, a stark contrast from the original dish.


silken tofu block 14 ounce
soy sauce 2 teaspoon
potato starch 1 teaspoon
sugar = 1 teaspoon
sesame oil 1 tablespoon
minced garlic 2 medium cloves
minced ginger 2 teaspoons
minced green onions (white part only) 2
Sichuan peppercorns 1/2 teaspoon
doubanjiang (chili bean paste) 2 teaspoons
low sodium chicken broth 1/2 cup


1. Add the chicken stock, cornstarch, soy sauce and sugar to a small bowl and stir to combine.

2. Heat a wok or large frying pan until hot. Add the sesame oil, garlic, ginger and green onions and stir-fry until fragrant. Add Sichuan pepper and continue stir-frying for about 30 seconds. Add the doubanjiang and stir to distribute.

3. Add the tofu, and toss to mix (if you stir it, the tofu will lose its shape).

4. Give the stock mixture a good stir to incorporate anything that may have settled, and then pour it over the pork and tofu. Toss to coat, then boil until the sauce thickens.

5. Garnished with the green parts of the green onions, then serve with hot rice.


Enriched with animal and plant proteins, calcium, phosphorus, iron, vitamins and carbohydrates, it has the effect of replenishing the fluid, and moistening the dryness, and replenishing the essence.

In summer, it can strengthen the spleen, which is good for fitness and disease prevention.

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