Braised Bean Curd Skin With Mushrooms Recipe

Dried bean curd sticks make a fantastic vegan or vegetarian store cupboard supper. It might be surprising that all the main ingredients are dried in this incredibly flavoursome recipe - typical of many Chinese dishes. The highlight is bean curd - or beancurd or tofu - 'skin', which takes on the flavour of the braising liquid and has an intriguing almost omelette-like chewiness.

The two different types of mushrooms in the recipe bring deep umami flavour, as well as adding another dimension of texture. It makes a quick, delicious and satisfying Chinese vegan meal.

What is dried bean curd skin?

Bean curd skin is the skin that forms on the top of soy milk when it is being made. The skin is skimmed off and dried to make dried beancurd skin. Sometimes it is sold in whole sheets to make dumpling wrappers, but it can also be rolled into sticks. 

Dried bean curd skin in the form of sticks is often considered a substitute to meat, however it is great used alongside beef or lamb in other slow-cooked dishes for a contrasting texture. 

What are the health benefits of dried bean curd skin?

Dried bean curd skin is a fantastic meat alternative, soaking up rich umami flavours from soy sauce and mushrooms in Chinese stocks. Like tofu it is high in protein, low fat, high fibre and rich in vitamins and minerals such as B vitamins and magensium.

Soy-based products are famous for helping to lower cholesterol. They are also high in isoflavones which are thought to reduce the risk of breast cancer and reduce the risk of osteoporosis post menopause

Cooking and serving the bean curd skin recipe

The recipe takes around 25 minutes, of which much of the time is spent just leaving the ingredients to rehydrate, or simmer. Serve with a side of steamed rice, and perhaps some quick steamed greens or fried green beans with garlic.

Different brands of bean curd skin sticks come in different lengths and thicknesses, and so soaking time might be different. Just check the beancurd skin is soft before you drain it. Also be sure to use sliced shiitake mushrooms - the cooking time will be much longer for whole shiitake mushrooms.

Tested 23rd Jan 2020 by Nicola

Braised Bean Curd Skin With Mushrooms Ingredients Serves: 4

Ingredients To Serve

  • 2 spring onions, finely sliced
  • Cooked white rice

Braised Bean Curd Skin With Mushrooms Recipe Method

  1. First rehydrate the dried bean curd skin sticks. In a large shallow dish, pour over boiling water and leave to soak for 10 minutes until soft. Cover with a small saucer if needed to keep the bean curd sticks submerged. Drain and discard the soaking liquid, gently squeezing out any excess water. 
  2. Whilst the bean curd sticks soak, rehydrate the mushrooms. Add the sliced shiitake mushrooms, and broken black fungus to a small saucepan. Cover with boiling water and simmer for 6 minutes until soft. Drain, and reserve the soaking liquid. Rinse the drained mushrooms in several changes of water.
  3. Heat the oil in a wok, and add the garlic, ginger and chilli. Fry for 1-2 minutes until fragrant. Tip in the softened sliced bean curd skin sticks and mushrooms. Stir in the shaoxing rice wine, light soy, dark soy, vinegar, sugar and 1/2 tsp salt. 
  4. Measure out 400ml of the mushroom soaking liquid, taking care to leave behind any sediment. Make up to 400ml with boiling water if needed. Pour into the wok and simmer gently for 10 minutes.
  5. Mix the potato flour with 3 tbsp cold water, and add to the wok. Stir for a minute until lightly thickened. Add the sesame oil, and another 1/2 tsp salt to taste.
  6. Garnish with sliced spring onion, and serve with plain steamed rice. Drizzle over more sesame oil if desired.
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Braised Bean Curd Skin With Mushrooms Recipe

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  • I made this for dinner and it was sooo good! The next time I make it I would maybe add 15 grams more of tofu skin. But the seasoning is perfect! wood ear mushrooms is so yummy!

    Kristen Anne Uy on

  • I have to admit I was dubious never having had bean curd sticks (I suddenly bought them on a whim) But wow do I love this dish! So tasty and so easy. This is going to be part of my regular weeknight routine. Love it! Thank you for sharing!!

    afra on

  • Tasty, but I thought it was missing something and added some fennel.

    Abby on

  • Omg deliciousness🤤 A keeper!

    Jade on

  • Well I thought I had bought ground turkey but instead bought sausage!! How could I have done that!! And thank you for the brown rice link, and yup that was the one!! Anyway I did make this tonight but instead of turkey I used ground beef! It was all I had and I wanted to make this so bad. But guess what – it was fantastic!! I know it would have been healthier with the turkey but this was, as my husband said — give it two yums!!! Thanks again
    Regards Hannah Flack

    Hannah Flack on

  • “I am a person that cooks in the Crockpot all the time! I like the Pulled Pork recipe, and the Mup Pie and Chicken Fajitas is awesome to make. This is a good time to cook in a slow cooker in the summer because it does not heat up the house!

    Regards Hannah Flack

    Hannah Flack on

  • I’ve been doing this for years. Taught by my (ex) Chinese wife. But she didn’t use the dried mushrooms and I NEVER messed with her recipes…… What a difference.

    Steve Martin on

  • We haven’t tried – it was all gobbled up! There is nothing in the dish that shouldn’t freeze well – the only thing would be the spring onion garnish, but you can always add more fresh when you defrost :-)

    nicola on

  • Hi there,

    I was wondering if you have tried freezing leftovers? Do they reheat well?

    With thanks,

    freezerfan on

  • Just a hint, my Chinese mother-in-law says to rehydrate with room temp water, to avoid taking out flavour from the mushrooms.

    Nean on

  • Sounds like a great idea! So glad you like it.

    nicola on

  • Hi! I have been wondering what to do with those long strands of dried bean curd tucked away in my pantry. This recipe is really tasty! I didn’t have any spring onions so I used chopped coriander instead. I will now try using chopped bean curd as a substitute for chicken strips in Asian recipes. Thanks for the inspiration!

    Vivienne on

  • Very satisfying and delicious. Vegan food that even I would crave.

    John Kern on

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