Food: Mabo Dofu

First off, you’ve probably noticed by now that I’ve changed my layout! Same header, but I felt like it was time for a bit of a makeover. Tangentially related: if you want to do a link swap for blogrolls or link pages, let me know! And now on to the real post!

Mabo dofu

A mabo dofu lunch set from a cheap Chinese restaurant in Kawagoe.

Mabo dofu (マーボー豆腐) is actually a Chinese dish (Sichaun), but the Japanese version is a little different and that’s what I’m familiar with. It’s tofu and minced meat (pork or beef) in a spicy bean paste and chili sauce, occasionally with other ingredients such as onions and water chestnuts. In Japan, the sauce also includes sweet bean paste because Japanese cuisine is very mild and spicy food doesn’t have as wide an appeal. I love spicy food myself, but still find the slight kick of Japanese mabo dofu satisfying. It’s also pleasantly easy to make and sauce mix can be found in any Japanese supermarket, which is nice (your local Asian market will probably have it). Really, it’s just a simple, hearty dish that I definitely enjoy.

The skinny:

What: Tofu and minced meat in a spicy bean paste and chili sauce.

Where: Chinese restaurants. Easy to make at home, too.

Cost: I believe that lunch set cost ¥1,000.

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