This dish is something new I’ve tried and I’m SO happy with it. I pair it with rice, rasam (Indian pepper soup) and other dishes. The MAIN reason I tried this dish is because I can easily air fry the tofu. I don’t need to fry the tofu using an amount of oil in a pan on the stove, but instead can do it in the air fryer and it crisps up just as beautifully. It only takes a few ingredients for this dish to come together.
I start by washing the kangkung thoroughly then leaving it to soak in a bowl of water. This is one of my favourite veggies, and I usually include the stalks in the dish too.
While the tofu is in the air fryer (takes just 5 mins), I chop up the dried shrimps and pound it together with the cili padi. I also mince a small amount of onion and garlic. And we are ready to go.
The combination of pounded dried shrimps and cili padi is a beautiful one. It may not smell like it but it will taste like it!
Soak the dried shrimps in a little water first, drain then pound with the cili padi. It will result in a rough paste. If you don’t have a mortar and pestle, you may mince the dried shrimps and slice up the cili padi.
Onto the cooking, I heat a wok with some oil and add in the minced onion and garlic. I then add in the pounded dried shrimps and cili padi. I fry this until the dried shrimps turn a darker colour and in go the kangkung. It will wilt down and stalks will become tender. Add salt and add in the air fried tofu and mix. Done.
This dish may not be the ‘main’ dish in any dining table – but it’s a winning dish. The umami flavour of the dried shrimps combined with the heat from the cili padi infused into the kangkung, with the added tofu to bring it all together – it’s really a meatless dish that is one to savour!
Kangkung: Water Spinach
Cili padi: Bird’s Eye Chili
Kangkung with Air Fried Tofu & Dried Shrimps
- 300 g Kangkung washed, soaked for a little while in a bowl of water and drained well before frying
- 2 cubes firm tofu cut into smaller squares
- 2 tbsp dried shrimps soaked in water for a few minutes
- 3 cili padi
- 1 shallot sliced or minced
- 3 cloves garlic sliced or minced
- 1/4 tsp salt
- Preheat AF at 180C. Cut tofu blocks into cubes, pat them dry then insert into air fryer for 5 mins. Done.
- Drain the dried shrimps and pound with mortar and pestle. Add in cili padi and continue pounding to form a rough paste.
- Heat a wok with 2 tbsp oil. Add in onions then garlic. Fry for about 30 seconds. Add in pounded dried shrimps and cili padi mixture. Keep frying until the dried shrimps turn a darker brown. ENJOY the aroma permeating your kitchen at this point!
- Add in well-drained kangkung and mix until kangkung has wilted and stalks are tender. Add in air fried tofu cubes. Season with salt. Mix. Done.
- Wash the kangkung very well with water, then leave to soak in a bowl of water then drain completely before frying.
- Add more cili padi if you wish for more kick!
- You may salt the tofu cubes prior to air frying if you wish.