Stir-Fried Spuds

Sup peeps. Earlier this week, we looked at some szechuan-style peanuts from Brighton Hot Stuff that I highly recommended using in a stir-fry.

I stand by that recommendation but, today, I’m going to add a caveat. They went really well into both noodle and rice-based stir-fries and they’d be just as good in a veg-heavy one but there’s a lesser known type of traditional stir-fry that I don’t see them working in. Potato Stir-fry.

Yep, you read that right. There’s a real chinese dish where they slice potatoes into ultra-fine strips and cook them like noodles. Albeit a touch more al denté.

I’m not going to lie, it’s super weird the first time you try it. It’s completely unlike any western form of spud. Yet keep going, for a few mouthfuls, and you’ll soon come to love it.

I discovered this dish at Xi’an Impressions, in london, on route to Challock Chilli Fest. I picked up a taste for it there that turned into a craving, during my recent brighton trip, but, unfortunately, I never made it back.

Instead, I’ve had to learn to cook shredded potato stir-fry myself. And now I’m going to teach you.

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Heat on the Beach

Hey there everyone, it’s tuesday again and time for a little more in the way of hot stuff. Hot stuff that I picked up down at the Brighton Fiery Food Fest.

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So what more apt name could today’s company have than “Brighton Hot Stuff”?

Now, personally, I do view it as a little uncreative but anything that these guys lacked in inspired naming was more than made up for by the sheer personality and passion that they had on-stall. They were one of the most engaging groups that I’ve ever come across at a festival and, even after the official closing time, there were non-stop crowds around them.

So, do their products live up to the hype? I’m going to take a look at three of them and find out.

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Mapo Tofu

Welcome back everyone, and welcome to the new year. The chinese new year!

To celebrate, I’ve been doing some chinese cooking and can offer you not one, not two, but three versions of my favourite oriental dish:

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Mapo Tofu. A dish that, despite its vegan-sounding name, is one of the most highly meaty-tasting main courses in china. Yet there’s actually only a very small amount meat in it.

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Regular Mapo Tofu

Hey there heat eaters! Today we’re making one of my favourite chinese dishes, Mapo Tofu.

Before we jump right into the recipe, however, I’d like to give you the opportunity to read up on the backstory to this dish and pick which of my three versions you’d prefer from my overview here.

This particular version is my “basic” one. A nice, medium heat and only minimally adapted from the recipes you might find were you to turn on a cooking show in China’s Szechuan province.

Here’s what you’ll need:

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Vegetarian Mapo Tofu

Hey there heat eaters! Today we’re making one of my favourite chinese dishes, Mapo Tofu.

Before we jump right into the recipe, however, I’d like to give you the opportunity to read up on the backstory to this dish and pick which of my three versions you’d prefer from my overview here.

This particular version is my vegetarian one as, despite its tofu content, most recipes for this dish don’t actual cater to the vegetarian diet. Most restaurants will insist on using ground pork but, as one particular place in London (sorry I don’t recall the name) proved to me, it’s not really necessary. Properly made Mapo Tofu gets its strong, meaty flavour from its signature fermented bean paste more than any actual meat.

So, in honour of that one restaurant and for the benefit of all you vegetarians out there, here’s my take on a meat free Mapo Tofu.

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Anime Style Mapo Tofu

Hey there heat eaters! Today we’re making one of my favourite chinese dishes, Mapo Tofu.

Before we jump right into the recipe, however, I’d like to give you the opportunity to read up on the backstory to this dish and pick which of my three versions you’d prefer from my overview here.

This particular version is my anime inspired one. A powerful version with a little more depth of flavour to compliment its high heat.

The particular anime that inspired this recipe is the one that first introduced me to the dish, Angel Beats, in which only one small girl is actually capable of finishing it and it plays a small but surprisingly important role in the story.

Here’s what it looks like in the show:

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