An Agemono dish in Japanese cookery is one in which the main ingredient is deep-fried. Age dofu (or tofu) is any preparation of deep-fried tofu, while Agedashi Tofu is cubes of the fried bean curd served in a dashi-based sauce. Here, as is often the case, the sauce is essentially a Kakejiru (or dashi, soy, mirin blend) lightly thickened with cornstarch.
- ¼ lb. Firm Tofu cut into bite sized cubes;
- ¾ cup Kakejiru broth (You can use the recipe here);
- 1 tbsp. Soy Sauce;
- ½ tsp. Cornstarch, plus more for dusting the tofu;
- Katsuobushi flakes plus finely sliced Scallion for garnish.
Notes: The amounts here are for a small appetizer portion for two. The ¾ cup of sauce is a bit more than we need but it is trickier to work with amounts much smaller. The sauce with Agedashi Tofu often uses more soy than the basic Kakejiru so I am adding another tablespoon You can increase this and even add more mirin or sugar if you like.
First, make a paste of the half teaspoon of cornstarch with a little water and then add in the Kakejiru. Heat this in a small pot over moderate heat until it thickens and turns clear and glossy. Keep warm for now.
Toss the cubes of tofu in the remaining cornstarch and shake off the excess.
Now deep fry the cubes in oil over moderate heat until the float to the surface and are just starting to turn golden brown in a few places.
Remove the cubes and drain on paper towels to remove the excess oil. For service, put a few cubes in appropriate dishes, pour over a little of the sauce and then garnish as desired. The Katsuobushi flakes and scallion I have used are fairly standard, but you can do as you please. Many renditions include some minced ginger as well…
Enjoy while still hot!