San choy bow (sans pork for vegetarians)

9 Mar

Woman spent her childhood dinners out normally at the Chinese and Vietnamese restaurants in Sydney’s inner west. Around the lazy Susan at these restaurants san choy bow was always a massive family favourite, involving many a pair of trousers ruined by the juices oozing out of poorly constructed lettuce rolls.

Traditionally this uses pork mince, which brings back less rosy memories of disconcerting crunchiness and the odd piece of gristle. Tofu is much less grisly. And Woman’s meat-lovin’ parents actually gave this vegan version the thumbs up during a trial run in Sydney. Gristle-free since 2001!

San choy bow (serves 2 as main, or up to 6 as part of Asian sharing menu)

  • 600g tofu, mashed with potato masher
  • 1/2 C vegetarian oyster sauce
  • 1/3 C lemon juice
  • 2 TBSP grated fresh ginger
  • 1 TBSP sweet chili sauce
  • 1 spring onion
  • 1 iceberg lettuce

Cut tofu into pieces and drain for a few hours, trying to get rid of as much excess liquid as possible.

Mix together sauce ingredients (not including spring onion). After tofu has been draining for a while, mash up until it’s kinda mince-like. Pour over the sauce and let marinate for a few hours – or you can also cook straight away.

Cook simply by throwing the tofu into a hot pan for a few minutes. Serve with spring onions thrown through.

Serve wrapped up in lettuce leaves.

Estimated cost: £2.20

Musical accompaniment: Onra

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