Silken Tofu With Crunchy Lettuce and Fried Shallots
Built like Japanese hiyayakko, in which cold, pudding-like tofu is heaped with toppings, this 20-minute dish is lively with contrasting textures and temperatures. Here, crunchy lettuces dressed with soy sauce, vinegar and seasoned oil are piled atop cold silken tofu, then scattered with crispy fried shallots and jalapeño. Eat the dish on its own, with rice or fish, and maybe a cold beer.
- Serves: 4 persons
- 1large shallot, halved and thinly sliced
- 1jalapeño or other fresh hot chile, thinly sliced
- 3tablespoons neutral oil (such as grapeseed or canola)
- Kosher salt (such as Diamond Crystal)
- 8cups torn romaine or Little Gem lettuce (about 3/4 pound or 2 heads)
- 1tablespoon unseasoned rice vinegar
- 1tablespoon soy sauce
- 2(14- to 16-ounce) blocks silken tofu, drained and refrigerated
Step 1In a large (12-inch) skillet, add the shallot, half the jalapeño slices and the oil. Sprinkle with salt, then set over high heat. Once sizzling, reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally with a fork, until golden, 4 to 6 minutes. Remove from heat, then use a slotted spoon or fish spatula to transfer shallot and jalapeño slices to a paper towel-lined plate. Leave the oil in the skillet.
Step 2To the skillet, add the lettuce, remaining jalapeño, vinegar and soy sauce. Toss until the lettuce is slicked with dressing and just barely wilted. (You want to maintain most of its crunch.) Season to taste with salt.
Step 3Invert the tofu onto a large platter (or divide among four plates). Using a knife or spoon, break the tofu into large chunks. Top with the wilted lettuce and any dressing from the skillet, then sprinkle with the fried shallots and jalapeño. Eat right away.