Experience vibrant flavours with this delectable vegetarian san choy bow recipe. Bursting with freshness and packed with wholesome ingredients, this dish offers a delightful fusion of textures and tastes.

This same tofu mixture is also great in a rice bowl and can easily be doubled, making it an easy family-style dinner for a group.

I like to use lemongrass in the mixture here, which (to save you the market scavenger hunt) can generally be found by the small aromatics like shallots or fresh herbs. To prepare the lemongrass, you want to remove the outer layer, smash it with the side of a knife and mince. It adds a unique brightness that is hard to replicate with anything else.

Serves: 4


  • 3 tablespoons / 45 ml coconut or avocado oil, divided
  • 225 g mushrooms, wiped cleaned and minced
  • Salt
  • 425 g extra-firm tofu, drained
  • 1⁄2 a small red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 serrano or jalapeño pepper, partially seeded and minced
  • 1 stalk lemongrass, minced
  • 2 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce (or soy sauce)
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • Zest and juice of 1 lime
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chilli crisp
  • 1⁄3 cup Vegenaise or mayonnaise
  • Dash of rice vinegar
  • Butter lettuce leaves
  • Toasted cashews, chopped
  • Shaved radishes
  • Fresh mint


  1. Heat half of the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and a big pinch of salt and sauté until most of their liquid is absorbed and edges are browned, about 5 minutes.
  2. Remove from the pan and set aside.
  3. Put the remaining oil in the pan, break up the tofu, and add it to the hot pan, breaking it up further with a wooden spoon (like you would ground meat). Let it sit for 5 minutes to get some good browning. Add the onion, sesame oil, garlic, serrano, and lemongrass and sauté another 5 or so minutes to mix. Add the mushrooms back in and stir. Add the tamari, fish sauce, and honey and mix to combine. Turn the heat down and let the flavours absorb for another 5 minutes. Stir in the lime zest, lime juice, and the green onions. Turn off the heat and set aside.
  4. In a small bowl, mix the chili crisp, Vegenaise or mayo, and rice vinegar together and stir to mix.
  5. To make the san choy bow, arrange a family-style assembly with lettuce leaves, tofu mixture, chilli crisp sauce, toasted cashews, radishes, and mint.

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This is an edited extract from Around Our Table by Sara Forte published by Hardie Grant Books. RRP AU $55.

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