Fomenting Fermented Red Bean Curd

Fermented red bean curd.

Savouring dishes cooked with the fermented red bean curd is an acquired taste. Either you love it or you do not. Some are put off by its pungent smell and taste. I love it. This must have been cultivated in me since childhood. Mum was a Hakka. Red fermented bean curd is used extensively in Hakka cuisines. I do not eat dishes cooked with this as often as I would like to. This salt preserved soy-based product is not good for my kidneys.

Deep fried fermented red bean curd pork.

One of my favourite Hakka dishes is the Deep Fried Fermented Red Bean Curd Pork. Belly pork is usually used. I find that too greasy to my liking. I do not know if this has been done before but I substituted belly pork with chicken breast. It tasted just as nice sans the greasiness. It is the batter that is important. I believe its taste is not as authentic as it should be. I am still trying to tweak the batter ingredients ratio each time this is cooked. Hopefully one day I will get it right.

Bean curd chicken nuggets.

Hakka Chicken Nuggets

1 piece chicken breast (approximately 300g)

2 cubes fermented red bean curd
Half cup wheat flour
Half tsp sugar
Quarter tsp five spice powder
150ml water

1 cup cooking oil

Cut chicken into bite size pieces. Mix the batter ingredients and stir well. Marinate the chicken in the batter for 2 hours. When ready, heat cooking oil in wok and deep dry the chicken until nicely browned. Serve with cucumber and chilli sauce. The chilli sauce can also be made by pounding 4 red chillies and 2 cloves of garlic. Add juice from one calamansi (lime) and half a teaspoon of sugar to the paste.