I went to the farmer’s market last weekend and asked for a small basket of the beautiful green beans from one of the farmers. Well, she gave me a small basket worth and then piled green beans up on top until we really had 2 small baskets worth. I didn’t mind getting extra since they were the best green beans I’d seen all season; perfectly sized, not overgrown, and not a spot on them. I knew immediately that I’d make some Szchezuan green beans with them.
I searched all of my cookbooks for a good recipe and nothing looked like what I wanted, so I hit the interwebs. I found the perfect recipe over at Vegan Bean. We loved it. It makes a lot of very tasty sauce to go with the rice. We make stir fry a lot (so this is a big compliment) and I think that this is now my favorite stir fry sauce recipe. I think this recipe would work with any combination of vegetables. Definitely a keeper.
Szechuan Green Bean Tofu
1 lb extra firm tofu, cubed
½ lb green beans
1 small onion, cut into chunks
2TB peanut oil
1TB Chinese chili paste (I like the Lee Kum Kee chili garlic sauce)
2 scallions, finely chopped
4TB soy sauce
3 cloves garlic, minced
1tsp ginger, minced
1TB sesame oil
1½ C water
Mix the cornstarch and water together until dissolved. Cut the green beans into bite size pieces, and steam until tender. Make the sauce by mixing the chili paste, scallions, sugar, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, and sesame oil together in a bowl. Set aside.
In a large skillet, heat the peanut oil over medium high heat. Add the tofu cubes and cook until crispy and lightly browned. Add the onion, cook for 2 minutes. Add the steamed green beans and the sauce mixture. Mix, cook for 2 more minutes. Add the water/cornstarch mixture. Cook, stirring constantly, for 3-4 minutes, until the sauce bubbles and thickens. Remove from heat, sprinkle with the sesame seeds.
Note – I pre-steamed the green beans about 4 minutes before stir frying them quickly.
Note 2 – I know that white rice is not especially good for me, but sometimes a sticky white rice is the right choice for stir fry!