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Salt and Pepper Tofu with Mango Salad and Forbidden Rice

Salt and Pepper Tofu with Mango Salad and Forbidden Rice

This dish features crisp Salt and Pepper Tofu paired with a vibrant and fresh mango salad served on a bed of forbidden rice.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Course Main Course, Salad
Servings 4


  • large wok


Mango Salad

  • 1 ataulfo mango julienne
  • 1 red bell pepper julienne
  • 1 shallot halved and sliced thin
  • 2-3 red chilis sliced thin
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 lime juiced
  • 1 tsp sesame oil

Salt and Pepper Tofu

  • 1 brick extra firm tofu cut into cubes
  • 1 tbsp whole green peppercorns
  • ½ cup cornstarch
  • 1 tsp salt divided
  • neutral oil for frying

For the Bowl

  • 3 cups forbidden rice cooked according to the package's direction.
  • 2 scallions sliced thin
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro coarsely chopped


For the Salad

  • Place the mango, pepper, shallots, and chili in a large bowl and toss to evenly disperse all of the ingredients and set aside.
  • Place the garlic, fish sauce, honey, lime juice, and sesame oil in a bowl and whisk to combine. Refrigerate the salad and dressing until ready to serve.

For the Tofu

  • Once the salad is made, put your rice on and start prepping your tofu.
  • Pour the peppercorns into a spice mill or a mortar and pestle and crush until a coarse powder forms.
  • In a small bowl, whisk to combine half of the salt and the cornstarch. Place the tofu in a large bowl and add the cornstarch mixture. Add a tablespoon of the pepper and toss until the tofu is thoroughly coated.
  • Pour 2" inches of neutral oil into a large wok and heat until shimmering. If you have a thermometer handy, aim for 360°F. But if you don't you can eyeball it. Add a piece of tofu and if the oil immediately reacts, you're good to go.
  • Fry the tofu until golden on all sides. About 7 minutes. Transfer the fried tofu to a cooling rack placed on top of a baking sheet. Whisk to combine the remaining salt and pepper and sprinkle the mixture over the freshly fried tofu.

For the Bowls

  • Divide the rice across 4 bowls. Add the dressing to the mango salad and toss to coat. Spoon the salad onto the rice and add the salt and pepper tofu. Garnish with scallions and cilantro.
Keyword forbidden rice, mango, mango salad, rice bowl, tofu