8–12 ounces tofu, patted dry and cubed (or sub shrimp or chicken cubes)
2 tablespoons peanut oil or high heat oil
Generous pinch salt and pepper
½ cup thinly sliced onion
4 ounces sliced mushrooms (optional)
2 cups shredded cabbage
1 cup shredded carrots or matchstick
½ red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 cup asparagus, snap peas, or green beans
Optional: 6-8 small dried red Chinese or Arbol chilies
¼ cup Szechuan Sauce and more to taste!
Garnish: scallions, sesame seeds, chili flakes
Yields: 2 servings
Heat oil in a skillet. Season oil generously with salt and pepper. Swirl the seasoned oil around until spread out uniformly. Add tofu and sear on at least two sides, until crispy and golden. Set aside.
To the same pan, add a little more oil if needed, onion, and mushrooms and sauté over medium-high heat– stirring constantly, until tender, about 3 minutes. Add the remaining veggies, add the dried chillies if you like– and lower heat to medium, and sauté, tossing & stirring for 3-5 minutes until just tender or al dente. Tender, but vibrant and still slightly crisp.
Add the Szechuan sauce, starting with ¼ cup and adding more to taste. Cook the sauce for 2 minutes, letting it thicken a bit. Toss in the crispy tofu (or shrimp or chicken) right at the end, just to warm it up.
Divide among bowls. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and scallions. Add chili flakes for more heat.
Serve this just as it is, or over rice, or noodles… and remember do NOT eat the dried chilis!