Salt and Pepper Tofu is a fabulous gluten-free, vegan starter or side. Great to share and just wonderful to eat. Before I became gluten-free I used to regularly (sometimes more than once a week) go to a Vietnamese restaurant near where I used to live. I had Salt and Pepper Tofu almost every time. I adored the crispy, crunchy outside and the slightly tangy, salty flavour. Who’d have thought it possible to make this at home? I am happy to say YOU CAN make this at home. My Salt and Pepper Tofu is a pretty good version of my favourite starter.
If you have friends around Salt and Pepper Tofu is the perfect sharing starter or part of a buffet. I would serve Salt and Pepper Tofu as a starter with Vietnamese Summer Rolls to follow. Or if you want to make Salt and Pepper Tofu part of a main meal serve with Cucumber, Seaweed and Carrot Salad and my favourite Basics – Perfect Plain Rice.
Salt and Pepper Tofu is quick and easy to make.
Allergy Information – Salt and Pepper Tofu
Salt and Pepper Tofu is gluten-free and vegan as well as… low FODMAP, celery free, coconut free, garlic free, lupin free, mustard free, nightshade free*, onion free, peanut free, sesame free*, tree nut free.
*For nightshade free leave out the chilli.
*For sesame free leave out the sesame oil.
Lots of ingredients in this recipe are some of my core store cupboard essentials. I use tamari, sesame seeds, salt… everyday. I would be lost without them! Find out what else is on my regular shopping list with my FREE Store Cupboard Essentials Cheat Sheet. Get it now! Just click the button below, sign-up and download.
Top Tips – Salt and Pepper Tofu
Sichuan peppercorn salt is a great condiment and seasoning for Chinese food. This recipe will make more than enough Sichuan peppercorn salt for several meals. You can store the left-over salt in an airtight jar for several weeks. (Having made the seasoning in bulk, you can make Salt and Pepper Tofu multiples times over the next few weeks with minimal work!!!)
For those of you with an air-fryer, this recipe is perfect for air-frying. At step 4. place the tofu in the air fryer with one tablespoon of oil and go! Follow your air-fryer instructions with regard to how much oil and other settings as all air-fryers are different. My air-fryer is a Tefal Actifry and the Salt and Pepper Tofu took around 10 minutes to get nice and crispy!
Recipe – Salt and Pepper Tofu
Preparation time 10 minutes
Cooking time 10 minutes
Ingredients – Salt and Pepper Tofu
400 grams firm tofu
2 tablespoons whole Sichuan peppercorns
3 tablespoons sea salt flakes
6 tablespoons cornflour
0.5 teaspoon black pepper powder (optional)
0.5 teaspoon chilli powder* (leave out for nightshade free)
Coriander for garnishing
Juice of 1 lime
2 tablespoons tamari (or other gluten free soya sauce)
0.25 teaspoon sesame oil* (leave out for sesame free)
Method – Salt and Pepper Tofu
1. Cut the firm tofu into bite size pieces and place on paper towels or a tea towel to drain and dry
2. Place a heavy bottomed frying pan on a low to medium heat and add the whole Sichuan peppercorns. Toast until they are lightly coloured and you can smell them. Turn the pan off. Place the whole Sichuan peppercorns in a mortar and pestle or small blender and grind to a powder, add the sea salt flakes and grind a little more. The result is Sichuan peppercorn salt
3. Place the cornflour on a large flat plate add two teaspoons of the Sichuan peppercorn salt, ground black pepper and chilli powder (if using) and mix well. Toss the piece of tofu in the cornflour mixture
4. Add the vegetable oil to the heavy bottomed frying pan – just enough to cover the bottom of the pan. Heat the oil on a medium heat and add to the hot pan. Fry until the tofu is golden and crisp on both sides
5. Drain the cooked tofu on kitchen paper and sprinkle with a little more Sichuan peppercorn salt
6. To make the dipping sauce mix the lime juice, tamari, sugar and sesame oil in a small cup and decant in to a suitable dipping bowl
7. Serve the tofu sprinkled with coriander and thinly sliced red chilli with the dipping sauce on the side.