Ingredients (serves 4):
4 spring onions, sliced
100ml groundnut oil
150gm minced beef or pork - optional
2½ tbsp Sichuanese chilli bean paste
2 tsp ground Sichuanese chillies
1 tbsp black fermented beans
1 tspwhite sugar
2 tsp light soy sauce
potato flour or corn starch
½ tsp ground roasted Sichuan pepper
1. Dice the beancurd and place in hot slightly salted water.
Heat the oil in a wok. Fry the meat if using until crispy.
Over a medium heat add the chilli bean paste and stir for a few seconds until the aroma is released. Add the beans and ground chillies and stir fry for around 30 seconds and the oil has turned a deep red.
Add the stock and drained beancurd. Move it around the work gently – do not stir otherwise the beancurd may disintegrate. Add the sugar, soy sauce and salt. Simmer for 5 minutes or until the curd has absorbed the flavours of the sauce.
Add the onions and thicken the sauce with potato flour.
Serve with a sprinkling of ground Sichuan pepper.