Ama’s Gingery Daugua

Ama is what we grandkids called my father’s mother when she was alive.  I believe it means paternal grandmother in TeoChew.  I love this dish, and my pa did too, and she did as well I believe.

The base of this dish is deep fried firm tofu, ginger, soy sauce & water.  This dish can be made with just these ingredients, although when I make it I tend to also add a wee bit of sugar, toasted sesame seed oil, & chinese rice wine.  My pa tended to use pre-fried tofu cut into quarters, and refried – for a bite-size crispy juicy ball of deliciousness.  When my mother made it however, she’d just use the pre-fried tofu and simmer it without any extra frying.  Both ways are good though of course refrying gives a nicer texture.

If deep frying the tofu, use medium to medium-high heat and remove once light brown.  You do not want to overcook them.

Then, in another pan/pot/whatever with a dash of oil, fry the ginger until crispy.  Then put all the tofu in, about half a cup of water, a couple tablespoons of soy sauce, and simmer for 20 minutes.  Optional extra ingredients are rice wine, sesame oil, and sugar.
imageA friend come over for dinner today, so I had a chance to make more than one dish, and lay the table out the way my family did for daily dinners.  It makes a change from my usual one-bowl sitting in front of the computer.  I also made a celery & capsicum in black bean sauce stir fry.  The dishes were served with brown jasmine rice.

And my dear friend brought me a cake! How cute is that!


4 thoughts on “Ama’s Gingery Daugua

  1. You know, it’s a good idea to use extra firm tofu otherwise it falls apart. It may be a vegetarian dish but I’ve always found that if it’s fried in beef tallow it makes for a very well rounded taste. The consistency is spot on when you say crispy. That helps the sauce adhere.

    The variation we used in our restaurant was tofu and spicy black bean sauce. I always liked using a tiny bit of fish sauce and hoisin to give it a little something extra.

    We used fried tofu in our sour spice soup too. I think mirin is the one ingredient that most people don’t use but it’s like… You know when it’s not there as you eat it.

    What do you use in your brown sauce?

    We used Kikkoman, oyster sauce, sugar, salt, chicken base, and water. Everything else was added info the wok during stir fry.


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