About this recipe:A spicy and tasty Chinese classic without the pork. This dish is usually spicy due to the broad bean and chilli paste, but there is an alternative shallot and bean paste that works just as well and you can make it less spicy by adjusting the chilli. Rather than the usual pork we have used Quorn® mince (or soy mince if you prefer), marinated in Chinese rice wine. The result is a great Chinese vegetarian dish.
Place the Quorn® mince in a dish and add the rice wine and 1 teaspoon soy sauce. Let marinate for 30 minutes.
Simmer the tofu in salted water for 15 minutes, then drain well. Cut into 3cm cubes. (Alternatively, skip the boiling step and use pre-fried tofu, available at many health food shops.) Toast the Sichuan peppercorns in a dry frying pan for 2 to 3 minutes, then remove and crush in a mortar and pestle. Set aside.
Heat the wok. When smoking hot, add a tablespoon of the groundnut oil. Stir-fry the haricots verts for 3 to 4 minutes until slightly charred. Remove and set to one side.
Add a second tablespoon of oil to the hot wok. Add the chillies and bean paste and cook for 1 minute. Add the garlic and ginger, and cook another 30 seconds. Add the stock, Quorn®, onion, soy sauce, sesame oil and Sichuan peppercorns; cook and stir for 2 minutes.
Dissolve the cornflour in the water and add to the wok; cook for a further minute till the mixture thickens.
Finally add the tofu and the green beans to the wok, and cook for another minute.
Tofu in an acquired taste and most people feel it is bland. Marinating the tofu does improve the flavour.