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Spicy & Crunchy Garlic Tofu (Kkampoong Tofu)

October 12, 2020 | By Joanne Molinaro, The Korean Vegan | 7 Comments

My Tricks For Making This Recipe.

  1. Make sure to press your extra firm tofu to remove excess liquid. This will ensure your tofu chunks are nice and crunchy.
  2. Use potato starch in lieu of corn starch or flour to not only keep this dish gluten free, but to make your tofu extra crispy.
  3. Use your favorite gluten free soy sauce in order to keep this entire recipe gluten free!
  4. Use vegetable oil in lieu of extra virgin olive oil in order to ratchet up the heat.
  5. Make sure not to allow the crunchy tofu bites to sit in the sauce too long before serving—the longer they sit in the sauce, the softer they will become.
  6. Serve with rice and water—this dish is SPICY!!

Spicy & Crunchy Garlic Tofu (Kkampoong Tofu)

Ingredients

  • A 16 ounce block extra firm tofu, pressed and chopped into 1/2 inch bite sized chunks
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • 2 Tablespoons potato starch plus 1 extra teaspoon
  • 7 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 red onion, diced
  • 2 Korean green chilis, sliced can sub seeded jalapenos
  • 2 whole scallions, white parts chopped, green parts sliced on a bias
  • 1 Tablespoon gochagaru
  • 1-1 1/2 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1/2 Tablespoon mirin (optional)
  • 5 Tablespoons vegetable oil, (divided into 4 and 1 Tbsp)
  • 1/8 cup dried red chilis (optional)
  • 1/2 Tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 Tablespoon toasted sesame seeds

Instructions

    1. To a large bowl, add a pinch of salt and 2 tablespoons of potato starch to tofu chunks. Gently toss the tofu to make sure they are all evenly coated. Set aside.
    2. Prep your vegetables by mincing the garlic, dicing the onion, slicing the Korean chilis, and chopping up the scallions.
    3. Prepare the sauce by mixing together gochugaru, soy sauce, white wine vinegar, maple syrup, mirin, and 1 teaspoon of potato starch. Set aside.
    4. To a very large non-stick pan, add 4 tablespoons of vegetable oil over high heat. When oil is very hot, add coated tofu chunks in one layer,making sure they are not touching each other. If they touch, they will stick to one another.
    5. Cook the tofu and flip them one by one, until they are brown on all sides (approximately 7 minutes). Remove the tofu chunks from the pan and set them aside on a cooling rack to drain the excess oil. Repeat with the remaining tofu.
    6. When all of the tofu has been fried, in the same pan, add 1 tablespoon of oil. Then add the garlic, onions, chilis, and scallions and saute the vegetables until the garlic starts to brown.
    7. Reduce the heat to medium-high and add the sauce, stirring it with a wooden spoon until it reduces down into a thick sauce (approximately 30 seconds). Turn off the heat.
    8. Gently add back the fried tofu and stir everything together, so that the tofu chunks are evenly coated in your sauce.
    9. Garnish the tofu with ½ tablespoon of sesame oil and 1 tablespoon of toasted sesame seeds. Serve immediately.

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7 Comments
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Comments

  1. This recipe is awesome! I have used it with tofu, but I also used it with chicken when I didn’t have tofu. I know this is supposed to be a vegan recipe, but the ingredients go great with chicken as well. I used corn starch instead of potato starch and avocado oil instead of other oils. I HIGHLY recommend this recipe; it is so versatile, easy, and delicious.

  2. This recipe was really delicious!! Made everyone on Instagram jealous. However I do not cook with tofu often and browning each side of the tofu in my small kitchen with no fan was really hard for me. Very smokey and time consuming I was overwhelmed. I may try with chicken next time like one of the comments said they did. Chicken is more familiar territory for me! However getting that tofu crispy was worth it for the texture it was truly mouth watering.

  3. I’ve never tried tofu and this will not be the last time. This tasted as good as chicken and you can use tofu in everything! Such as chicken curry, soup ect. I replaced some of the ingredients I had in my own kitchen and added some ingredients but overall great recipe.

  4. This is easily one of the best things I’ve ever cooked for myself. I also added carrots with the veggies and subbed rice vinegar for white vinegar since that’s what I had and the whole situation is just *chef’s kiss*

  5. I made this for my family and they loved it! Jeremy Scheck and the Korean Vegan are my two favorite tik tokers so when I saw this crossover on Jeremys website I had to try it and it was super good!

  6. amazing!!! the best tofu recipe i’ve tried! soooo flavorful and the perfect amount of spice. amazing with rice and bok choy!

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