Name Origin of MaPo Tofu

MaPo Tofu belongs to famous Szechwan cuisines. MaPo Tofu is a dish which is suitable for home cooking. I used to be on business trip in Chengdu, Szechwan province and had tasted the most authentic Mapo Tofu and it is really a amazing dish. If you like the spicy and hot food very much, there is no doubt that you will love MaPo Tofu. But in this article I would like to tell you why this dish is called Mapo Tofu.

In the legend, Mapo was an old woman who raised herself by opening a restaurant and selling Tofu. MaPo’ first name is Chen. We just call her Chen in short. In Tongzhi period of Qing Dynasty, Wanfu Bridge was the place where many merchants gathered. Chen’s restaurant was located in Wanfu Bridge area. Chen had super excellent coagulation skills in making Tofu and the Tofu she made is rather white and soft. In addition, her Tofu dish provided a kind of special delicious taste; as a result, her business grew rapidly.

Chen’s growing business caused much envy of Miss Liu, who opened another restaurant in the next door.

One day, a customer came to Chen’s restaurant with his two pounds of diced beef. When he was going to sit down, Miss Liu did some kind of flirt action to this customer. Liu had some charms and the customer just turn to her restaurant without taking his diced beef.

Chen became angry when she saw this scene. At the same time, there was another group of customer came in and they saw diced beef on the table, then they asked Chen to cook Stir-Fried beef with Tofu. In the first moment, Chen did not want to use other’s beef, but the new customers could not wait and ask her to do it as soon as possible. Finally, Chen cooked this stir -fried beef with Tofu.

Things always happened out of expectation, the stir-fried beef was so delicious and more and more customers tended to love this dish. Her business became very hot. All of this made the neighbor boss’s wife become angrier and envier. She often abused that Chen was a really ugly woman and her face is filled with pockmarks. But Chen was an open-minded woman and she just ignored the words and did her business.

Later, she even established a sign board with name of “Chen Mapo Tofu”. Here, you must be informed that in Chinese “Mapo” means” Pockmarked old woman”. Then her restaurant became more and more famous in Chinese. The dish she made with beef and Tofu became one of the most famous dishes in history.

That is the story of MaPo Tofu.

For details on how to cook authentic Mapo Tofu, please refer to my site: http://www.kung-pao-chicken.com/traditional-chinese-food/authentic-mapo-tofu-2/

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