Szechuan string beans with tofu in black bean sauce

by Heguiberto on July 5, 2011

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This recipe is a take on Szechuan style long beans, which I adore.

The dish has all those amazing Asian flavors going on: ginger, garlic, pepper sauce, soy sauce and the magical, fermented black bean sauce. Fermented black bean sauce is a Chinese culinary wonder made with soybeans that have been fermented, and, in the process, turn black and soft. These black beans have a salty, sweet, spicy, sharp, pungent, umami flavors. Generally it has fermented black beans, oil, soy sauce and other spices, delish! This is widely available at Asian and other specialty markets. Whole Foods has it, too. Some come with pepper, the “spicy black bean sauce;” some, without, the “black bean sauce.” We use both kinds depending on our mood.

Szechuan string beans with tofu in black bean sauce

Szechuan string beans with tofu in black bean sauce

Szechuan string beans with tofu in black bean sauce

2 lb string beans, stem-ends removed
1 lb firm tofu, cut into ½ inch thick triangles
1 tbsp fermented black bean sauce
1 tbsp chili garlic sauce (we use Túong ót Tói Viet-Nam cock brand)
dark soy sauce to taste
2 tbsp water
1 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
10 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp canola oil
3 tbsp olive oil
½ tsp vegetable bullion paste
1 tsp kosher salt

Boil 2 cups of salted water then over tofu triangles. Let soak for about 15 minutes. Drain and dry on paper towels.

Place beans in large non-stick skillet. Add canola oil and toss to coat. Bring temperature to high and cook beans, covered, until charred and blistered, about 10 minutes or so. Stir occasionally. Transfer beans to bowl and keep warm.

Return pan to stove. Add one tablespoon olive oil and sauté tofu on high heat for about 4-5 minutes, turning half way. Transfer to a warm bowl.

Using the same pan, add remaining olive oil. Sauté ginger and garlic together until aromatic. Add fermented back beans, garlic chili sauce, and string beans. Continue sautéing until string beans becoming coated with sauce. Add water, soy sauce, tofu and toss gently to coat. Serve at once with white rice. Serve more chili sauce on the side if you can take it!

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Heavenly Housewife July 5, 2011 at 7:55 am

I need to experiment with tofu a little, its so good for you! Great dish 😀
*kisses* HH
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tasteofbeirut July 5, 2011 at 8:49 pm

Looks great! I had a few dishes with that black bean sauce in Beirut last summer and loved it. These beans have always fascinated me for some reason, love their limpness and their length!
tasteofbeirut recently posted..And this vegetable is?My Profile

Krista July 6, 2011 at 3:06 pm

Oh my, I love Szechuan style long beans too!!! 🙂 Now you’ve got me craving them something fierce. 🙂 Love the idea of using chili garlic sauce. Mmm.
Krista recently posted..Wordless Wednesday: Jardin du Luxembourg, ParisMy Profile

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