If you have ever travelled to Eastern Asia, China, in particular, you will know that there is something that is comforting and delicious about the cuisine. There are some unique tastes and flavours of the food, as well as amazing sauces that can be savoury, sweet, or both. There is also an element of simplicity to the food too, with simple carbs that anyone can cook at home, such as rice and noodles. The sweetness, the saltiness, the sauces, it can keep many people coming back for more. But have you ever tried recreating your favourite Chinese dishes at home and it just isn’t quite the same?
Of course, you could look to get takeout from your local Chinese restaurant, or even look for the best frozen Chinese food to have at home ready to go. But if you like to cook and want to recreate some of your favourite foods that you have sampled in China, or Asia in general, then here are some tips to help.
Tofu, or bean curd as it is sometimes called, is a staple in a lot of Asian cooking, especially in China. It is affordable and versatile, meaning it can work in a number of ways. Soft tofu can be used to create sauces, as it is silky and creamy. Firm tofu can be used as a meat substitute and thrown in for protein into your favourite stir fry dishes. But tofu can also be used as a substitute for eggs. If you don’t want to use real egg in fried rice, for example, then think about using tofu. You can make a tofu scrambled egg, to add to your rice and veggies, which is ideal for allergies, as well as those looking for a little something extra. Tofu soaks up sauces and marinades, so it can end up being tastier than an egg.
Make your own Tso sauce
If you have ever eaten a Tso dish before, then you will know why it is such a popular choice. It is simple to make at home and can be used with veggies and rice, meaning that there is no need to pick up the takeout menu. The ingredients to make your own at home are:
- Soy sauce
- Rice wine
- Chilli paste
Combine them together, with the cornstarch last to make it thicker, and then you’re good to go. The sauce is sticky, but not too sweet or spicy, so it works for a number of different meals.
Perfect your rice
If you want to do well in Asian cooking, then you need to get rice exactly right. The good news is that there are cooking instructions on the back of rice packets, so you will know exactly what to expect and how much water to add. When you get rice right, and can cook it simply and easily, it is then simple to make a lot of other dishes from it adding your protein, sauce, and veggies.
What are some of your favourite Chinese dishes? It would be great to hear what you think.