Stuffed Bean Curd

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


    as a Main Course .

Appears in

Chinese Technique

By Ken Hom

Published 1981

  • About

Stuffed bean curd is unusual and delicious. The flavors of the stuffing contrast with the blandness of the curd. Each bean curd is cut into triangles that are hollowed out carefully and stuffed with shrimp paste (fish paste may be used as well). The triangles are pan-fried to firm up the surface, making a light crust to hold the packages together. The flat pieces of bean curd brown better in a flat skillet than in a curved wok. The dish reheats well, so it can be made ahead. If triangles seem too risky, try hollowing out squares instead. For this technique, firm Chinese bean curd is a must; the Japanese type is too soft.


  • 4 large squares Chinese tofu
  • ½ recipe Basic Shrimp Paste
  • 3 tablespoons peanut oil, or more


  • 1 tablespoon thin soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine or dry sherry
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons minced Chinese parsley


Shallow pan-frying

  1. Cut the squares of tofu diagonally into triangles. Use a paring knife or a butter knife to etch a thin outline for the pocket on the diagonal surface of the triangle, leaving a ½-inch margin.

  2. Working slowly and carefully, gently begin to “chisel” out a pocket.

  3. Keep in mind that the tapering sides of the triangle mean you’ll have to dig deeper at the center than at the sides.

  4. When the pocket is hollowed out as much as possible, gently press the shrimp puree into it with your finger.

  5. Use a spoon to push the puree gently into the corner of the triangle as far as it will go. Work carefully to avoid splitting the piece of tofu.

  6. Heat the oil in a flat skillet and brown the triangles in it, starting with the stuffed edge. This keeps the stuffing in.

  7. Brown the triangles lightly on all sides.

  8. Add the sauce ingredients and simmer the dish for 5 minutes.

  9. This can be prepared ahead and gently reheated in the sauce.

  • May be prepared ahead of time and reheated in the sauce.
  • Suggested Beverage: Dry Sauvignon Blanc or Graves