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Vegan Tangsuyuk (탕수육)|


Ingredients

Units Scale

Batter

  • 1 cup potato starch (120g)
  • 1 1/2 cup water (or enough to cover the potato starch)
  • 2 tbsp aquafaba (22)
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil (15)

Tofu

  • 350g traditional tofu, frozen, thawed and pressed twice*
  • 5 garlic cloves, smashed and finely minced (15g)
  • 1 tbsp dark soy sauce (15ml)
  • 1 heaping tsp ginger, optional (6g)
  • 1/4 tsp salt (1g)
  • 1/4 tsp pepper (1g)

Sauce

  • 11.5 tbsp potato starch (10-15g) + 2 tbsp water mixed together (30ml)*
  • 45 tbsp sugar (about 60g)
  • 2 tbsp vinegar (40g)
  • 1 tbsp dark soy sauce (15ml)
  • 1 tbsp ketchup, optional
  • 2/3 cup vegetable broth
  • 1/4 tsp salt and pepper, to taste

Vegetables (about 20-40g each)

  • 1/2 small carrot, thinly sliced (20g)
  • 1/4 medium onion, sliced (40g)
  • 1/4 english cucumber, sliced (30g)
  • 1/4 green bell pepper, chopped (35g)
  • 1/4 red bell pepper, chopped (35g)
  • pineapple chunks or apple, chopped (50g)

Instructions

  1. At least 3 hours before making, combine the potato starch and water and let it sit in the fridge. I typically do this the night before. The water and starch will separate during this time. 
  2. Take the prepared tofu and rip strips / chunks off. Add it to a bowl along with the garlic, dark soy sauce, ginger, salt and pepper. Toss to combine and let it marinate. In the meantime, chop the vegetables.
  3. Next, to make the batter, carefully remove the water from the starch. Add the aquafaba and oil, and stir to combine. The starch will be super thick and hard at first, but use a fork and cut through it. The oil will help loosen the starch, and then whisk until smooth.
  4. Pour the starch mixture over the tofu and gently mix until everything is coated in the batter.
  5. Heat 2-3 cups of oil (enough to fill your frying pot) to 350 F. Carefully drop the tofu pieces into the oil. Be sure not to overcrowd the pot (work in 2-3 batches as needed). Fry until light golden brown, about 2-3 minutes. Remove the pieces with a skimmer and place on a wire rack lined with paper towel. Allow the tofu to completely cool. 
  6. In the meantime, prepare the sauce. Mix the water and corn starch together in a small bowl. Over high heat, add all the ingredients into a medium pot except the prepared slurry, until the sugar melts. Bring the sauce to a boil and add the onions and carrots. Cook for 1 minute. Then add the bell peppers and cook for another 30 seconds. Mix the slurry and then slowly pour it in, stirring continuously. Add the cucumbers and pineapples, and stir to combine. Turn off the heat, taste and adjust as needed by adding more vinegar, salt or pepper. 
  7. Heat the pot of oil again, this time to 375 F. Add the pieces of tofu and fry until slightly darker golden brown (about 2 minutes). Remove the tofu with a skimmer and place on a wire rack. 
  8. Serve with the sauce poured over or on the side and enjoy!

Notes

  • *Tofu: Any tofu can be used here. Firm, extra firm, medium firm or traditional. I find traditional produces the most meat-like consistency but this recipe works great with firm as well. Be sure to freeze, thaw and press at least once (and twice for traditional and medium firm). 
  • ** Use 1 tbsp of corn starch for a smoother sauce consistency (good for pouring) and 1.5 tbsp corn starch for a thicker sauce (good for dipping). 
  • Helpful Equipment: wire rack, skimmer
  • Nutritional Information Disclaimer: Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated on an online tool (Cronometer).