Tokwa't Baboy (Fried Tofu and Pork)
This dish is as straightforward as its name suggests. But, simple as it may seem, this dish has seen many happy days, as it is popular beer food. It's just the perfect fit for munching in-between gulps and chatter. Tokwa't Baboy, however, is also a popular snack item, usually paired with rice porridge.
In a sense, Tokwat's Baboy is comfort food. Just mention the name and it never fails to bring out smiles all round.
This recipe is not the traditional dish in a sense, as pig's ears are normally used. But pig's ears are hard to come by where I'm in. So I used pork liempo instead. Also, the sauce is usually mixed right in with the pork and tofu and served as such. But when we order this dish, we ask the waiter to place the sauce in a separate dish and we dip the yummy pieces in. That's because the tofu slurps up the sauce so you get mushy bits after some time. This is also how I present this recipe.
- 500g pork liempo
- 500g firm tofu
- 1/3 cup soy sauce
- 1/4 cup cane vinegar
- as needed water
- as needed cooking oil
- 1 medium brown or white onion
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed and finely chopped
- a couple stalks spring onion, chopped
- 2tbsp brown sugar
- Cut the onion into 2 pieces. Chop one half into rings, the other into small pieces.
Lay the pork pieces flat onto a thick-bottomed pan. Pour water halfway the pork level. Bring to a boil over medium heat uncovered, occasionally turning the pork over so the other side gets cooked too. Let it boil until all the water has evaporated.
Remove the pork pieces, then chop into bite-size pieces (roughly into cubes). Return to the pan and fry, adding a bit of cooking oil to help it along. fry until lightly browned.
While you are cooking the pork, you can actually start frying the tofu separately as well over medium heat. Using a non-stick frying pan and cooking oil, fry the tofu until all sides are lightly browned (see photo below for reference). You want a bit of crunch with your tofu, while making it soft inside. I divided my block of tofu cake into 8 pieces. When all sides have been browned, I drained the tofu and let it cool a bit before chopping each block into 6 smaller pieces.
- Place the tofu and the pork pieces onto the serving dish. Mix if you like (or try my presentation!), adding fresh onion rings with it.
Now for the sauce. Place the soy sauce, brown sugar, onion and garlic in a sauce pot and mix. Then add the vinegar (do not mix!) and turn on medium heat.
Bring to a boil then transfer to a sauce bowl to cool. Garnish with spring onion.
- Serve and enjoy.