Tofu with Dried Shrimp and Shiitake Mushrooms (海米香菇豆腐羹)
February 5, 2022  Print
This Southern Chinese dish, Tofu with Dried Shrimp and Shiitake Mushrooms, is so easy to make and delicious at the same time. Using sesame oil to cook the tofu adds a special nutty and aromatic flavor to the dish. Since this recipe does not use other strong seasoning, sesame oil is especially important to its flavor. I don’t recommend replacing sesame oil with other types of oil unless you are specifically allergic to it. The chopped dried shrimp and shiitake mushrooms add some texture and give the dish just enough umami without overwhelming it. You can also add or change the accompanying ingredients to your liking.
When taking a spoonful, the soft tofu melts into your mouth and gives you a comforting and warm feeling. I think this healthy, yummy dish is especially great for families with young and old people due to its soft texture and fragrant flavor. It pairs well with rice, noodles, and porridge.
Gluten Free, Low Carb
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 2 – 4 people
- 1 container soft tofu (~1 lb or 450g) 1
- 1 tablespoon dried shrimp 2
- 2 – 3 dried shiitake mushrooms 3
- 1 tablespoon super-finely-minced ginger or 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 tablespoon sliced green onions
- 1/4 cup water or stock 4
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dark soy sauce 5
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons sesame oil (麻油) 5
- 1 tablespoon starch
- Soften the dried shiitake mushrooms by immersing them in hot or warm water (anywhere from 15 minutes up to 1 hour). Soften the 1 tablespoon of dried shrimp by immersing them in a small bowl of water or Chinese Shaoxing cooking wine for about 15 minutes.
- While softening the dried shiitake mushrooms and shrimp, prepare the other ingredients. Mince the ginger and slice the green onion into small pieces. Add 3 tablespoons of water to the 1 tablespoon of starch to make starch water.
- When the dried shiitake mushrooms and shrimp are ready, chop them into small pieces (make sure to first remove the stem from shiitake mushrooms ). Then heat a well-seasoned skillet or non-stick pan under medium-high heat. When the skillet is getting hot, add the 1 tablespoon of sesame oil. When the sesame oil becomes warm, add the soft tofu. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to keep pushing and mashing the tofu into small pieces and cook the tofu for about 3 minutes.
- Then add the rest of the ingredients except the sesame oil and starch water. This includes the chopped dried shiitake mushrooms, chopped shrimp, minced ginger, sliced green onions, 1/4 cup of water or stock, 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon of dark soy sauce, and 1/2 teaspoon of sugar, stirring to combine.
- Keep tossing and stirring for another 3 to 5 minutes until everything is cooked through and integrated. Then add some starch water, one teaspoon at a time, to thicken the liquid a bit (make sure to stir and mix the starch water before pouring). Drizzle the last 2 teaspoon of sesame oil and turn off the heat. Transfer to a plate or bowl and enjoy while warm.
- For this tofu recipe, I would use soft tofu rather than firm tofu. You can find soft tofu in any Asian grocery store.
- Many western grocery stores actually carry dried shrimp. I got mine from H-E-B (a Texas grocery chain). You can always find them in an Asian grocery store.
- Any dried shiitake mushroom would work. Larger ones require more time to fully soften. You can also use fresh shiitake mushrooms. I like dried shiitake mushrooms better for this recipe due to their chewy texture which complements nicely with the soft tofu.
- I used my homemade pork bone stock here to add more umami. You can use water, low sodium chicken, and vegetable stock as well. If your stock has sodium, lower the salt amount slightly.
- You can find sesame oil these days in pretty much any grocery store. This is the one I normally use.
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