Yong Tau Foo

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A traditional dish in Hakka Chinese cuisine, this dish of tofu stuffed with fish paste is commonly found in hawker centres and food courts in Singapore and Malaysia.

Let's start cooking!

Mix fish paste with spring onion, red chilli and season with pepper and sesame oil

Step 1 - Mix and prepare the fish paste

  • Finely chop spring onion and 1 red chili.
  • Add 3 dashes of white pepper powder, sesame oil, chopped spring onion and red chili into the fish paste and mix well.

Stuff mixed fish paste into fried tofu puff

Step 2 - Clean and stuff the yong tau foo

  • Clean the ladies’ fingers and 6 red chilies with water and slit in the middle.
  • Discard the seeds of the red chilies, and pat dry ladies’ fingers and red chilies with paper towels.
  • For the fried tofu puffs, poke an opening at the top surface with a small knife or your finger.
  • Stuff the fish paste into the red chilies, ladies’ fingers, and fried tofu puffs using a butter knife.
  • Fill the insides well but make sure that you do not over-stuff them.
    Yong tau foo can also be served with stuffed shiitake mushrooms, bitter gourds, eggplants as well as green chili. The addition of fish balls and fish cake is also popular.
Fried tofu, red chilli and ladies fingers with fish paste in a frying pan

Step 3 - Steam and pan-fry the yong tau foo

  • Steam the stuffed ingredients for 5 minutes.
  • Over high heat in a hot pan with 1 Tbsp oil, pan-fry the steamed yong tau foo. Once lightly caramelized, set aside.
Yong tau foo sauce

Step 4 - Prepare the sauce

  • Over high heat in a hot pan with 1 Tbsp oil, stir-fry the chopped garlic until light brown or fragrant.
  • Add 1 Tbsp taucheo, water, 1 Tbsp sugar and stir.
  • As soon as the sauce thickens, add the yong tau foo into the pan and stir well. Serve the yong tau foo.
    The dry versions of yong tau foo come with a red fermented bean curd gravy drizzled over.

Plate and Serve!

Yong tau foo served in a pot

Serve hot, as a side dish or with noodles as a main.

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