Like in many countries, sweet and sour dishes became popular in Thailand due to Chinese influence. One distinct characteristic though of the Thai version of this dish is spice. The locals add chilies or Thai sriracha sauce to the sauce mixture. Cucumber is another ingredient that is common in Thai dishes. Though in other countries, cucumbers are typically eaten raw, Thais love to cook them. It adds another layer of texture to their dishes.
In this sweet and sour stir-fry recipe, tofu cubes are deep-fried until crisp and golden brown. The vegetables are stir-fried with the sauce mixture first before adding the tofu cubes. The brilliant idea of using cashew nuts adds crunch to the dish. Like in any other stir-fried dishes, the key is to mix all the ingredients for the sauce first before pouring into the wok. As stir-fried dishes are cooked quickly, this step ensures that the combined flavors of the sauce are well distributed to all the ingredients in the dish.
This recipe takes about 20 minutes to make. Serves 4.
• 300 grams of medium firm tofu, cut into 1-inch cubes, then deep-fried
• 3 cloves garlic, chopped
• ½ cup of pineapple chunks
• ½ onion, julienned
• 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
• 1 cup of cucumber
• 1/2 cup of asparagus, cut into 2-inch sticks
• 1 cup of julienned bell pepper
• ⅓ cup of cashews
• 2 green onions, cut into 1-inch pieces
• 2 tbsp white vinegar
• 2 tbsp oyster sauce
• 2 tbsp sriracha sauce
• 1 tbsp soy sauce
• 2 tbsp brown sugar, packed
• ½ tsp toasted sesame oil
Start by preparing the sauce.
In a small bowl, mix together white vinegar, oyster sauce, sriracha sauce, soy sauce, brown sugar, and sesame oil, then set aside.
Heat oil in a wok over medium-high heat.
Sauté garlic for 2 minutes.
Put all the vegetables into the wok and stir-fry for 1 minute.
Pour in the sauce and continue stir-frying for 5 minutes.
Add the fried tofu cubes and stir-fry for 1 minute.
Turn the heat off, then add green onions and half of the cashew nuts.
Give it a good mix, then transfer to a serving dish.
Top off with the remaining cashew nuts.
Ideas And Tips:
Frying the tofu cubes reduces their water content, making them spongy so they absorb the sauce better. If you don’t want to fry the tofu, use the extra firm variety so the tofu cubes do not crumble while cooking.
You may substitute white vinegar with rice vinegar or cane vinegar.
You may substitute cucumber with zucchini.
Aside from fried tofu cubes, you can use shrimps, fish, oysters, crabsticks, pork, beef or chicken. It is best to coat them with tempura batter or breading mix, then deep-fry them.
To make this a vegetarian dish, use mushrooms sauce instead of oyster sauce.
images – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I7EWu3asd_A