Stinky Tofu 臭豆腐


Chinese Name: 臭豆腐

English Name: Stinky Tofu; Fermented Bean Curd

Category: Snack小吃

Main Ingredients: Tofu

Stinky Tofu 臭豆腐
Changsha stinky tofu

Stinky Tofu臭豆腐 is one of the traditional snacks in China. It has the characteristics of “smelly and delicious闻起来臭,吃起来香”. There are considerable differences in the production methods and eating methods of stinky tofu, and the types are also different in the north and south. Stinky tofu is also known as stinky dried seeds臭干子 in the south.

Stinky Tofu 臭豆腐
Fermented bean curd being watered with chili oil

Fermented bean curd can be divided into fermentation and non-fermentation. The odor of fermented fermented bean curd comes from hydrogen sulfide, indole and some stinky amino acids produced by protein fermentation. And the odor of non-fermented fermented bean curd mainly comes from stinky brine. However, whether fermented stinky tofu or non-fermented fermented bean curd, the root cause of stinking is that the protein in tofu is decomposed to produce odor, so it “smells smelly闻起来臭”.

Fermented bean curd is cooked, especially after frying, and the “odor molecules” are fully volatilized, so the odor is not strong. On the other hand, at high temperatures such as frying and barbecue, tofu will also undergo a Maillard reaction, further generating various flavor molecules, so it “tastes delicious吃起来香”.

Stinky Tofu 臭豆腐
Fermented bean curd sprinkled with pepper

Among many kinds of stinky tofu, the fermented bean curd in Changsha, Hunan Province is the most famous. The brine ingredients of fermented bean curd in Changsha, Hunan Province are cooked with Douchi, soda ash, green alum, mushrooms, winter bamboo shoots and salt. Then boil fermented black bean sauce, add mushrooms, winter bamboo shoots, Baijiu and other seasonings, and soak for 15 days.

Stinky Tofu 臭豆腐
Delicious fermented bean curd

It is said that Zhu Yuanzhang朱元璋 was born in poverty. He was a beggar and monk when he was young. Once he was too hungry to bear. He picked up expired tofu discarded by others, fried it in oil, and put it into his mouth. Then the taste was unforgettable. Later, when he became the military commander, the army successfully fought all the way to Anhui. He happily ordered the whole army to eat fermented bean curd to celebrate. Finally, the reputation of stinky tofu spread widely.

Stinky Tofu 臭豆腐
Stinky tofu cartoon

Fermented bean curd is divided into stinky dried tofu臭豆腐干 and stinky tofu milk臭豆腐乳. They are both very popular snacks. Although fermented bean curd is small, its production process is relatively complex. It usually goes through several procedures such as frying, halogen addition and fermentation. In the whole production process, it is required to be carried out under natural conditions, and the requirements for temperature and humidity are very high. Fermented bean curd milk has low saturated fat content, no cholesterol, and soy isoflavones, a unique health ingredient in soybeans.

Stinky Tofu 臭豆腐
The unique shooting of fermented bean curd

Eating fermented bean curd has a positive effect on the prevention of Alzheimer’s disease. A scientific study shows that once stinky tofu is made, the most significant change in nutritional composition is the synthesis of a large amount of vitamin B12. Every 100 grams of fermented bean curd can contain about 10 micrograms of vitamin B12. And lack of vitamin B12 can accelerate the aging process of the brain and induce Alzheimer’s disease.

How to make Stinky Tofu?


  • A piece of tofu
  • Two pieces of stinky tofu milk
  • A little coriander
  • A little chives
  • A little garlic
  • A little chili oil
  • A little cumin
  • A little pepper
  • A little chili noodles
  • A little sesame paste
Stinky Tofu 臭豆腐
Stinky tofu placed with special kitchenware


  • Step 1, Steam the tofu in a steamer, remove the moisture and let it cool for standby. Then cut the tofu into thick slices, put oil in the pot, put in the cut tofu and start frying.
  • Step 2, Fry the tofu into golden yellow, and remove and control the oil.
  • Step 3, Crush the stinky tofu milk in a bowl, pour in a little stinky tofu juice and sesame paste, add a little water and stir well. Then add pepper, cumin powder, chili powder and sesame, and sprinkle with hot oil. Chop the scallion, garlic and coriander.
  • Step 4, Pour sauce on the tofu.
  • Step 5, Sprinkle with coriander, minced garlic and scallion.
Stinky Tofu 臭豆腐
Tempting stinky tofu

Video Guide

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