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Chinese Sloppy Joes

Yield 4 servings
This is a kid-friendly version of Ma Po Dofu, the classic Szechuan dish.


  • 2 teaspoons vegetable or peanut oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger, or 1 teaspoon powdered ginger
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced (optional)
  • 1/3 pound ground turkey
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen peas, not thawed
  • 1 cup thinly sliced carrots
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 (14 1/2 ounce) can low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 (16 ounce) package firm tofu, drained and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 cup white rice
  • 2 cups water
  • Salt
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • Garnishes, optional: 1 scallion, finely chopped, and 2 tablespoon fresh coriander, finely chopped

How to Make It

  1. In a wok or a large skillet, heat 1 teaspoon of oil over high heat. Add ginger and garlic, and sauté 10 seconds, stirring constantly. Add scallions (if desired) and turkey; brown, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes.

  2. Add peas and carrots, and cook for 1 minute. Add sesame oil and soy sauce, and cook for 10 seconds. Add broth; bring to a boil, about 2 minutes. Slip tofu on top, cover; reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

  3. Meanwhile, bring rice, water, a pinch of salt, and the remaining teaspoon of oil to a boil in a medium-size saucepan. Stir, reduce heat to low, and cover. Let cook 15 to 20 minutes, or until water has been absorbed.

  4. Create a paste by mixing cornstarch in a small bowl with 1/2 cup hot broth from wok. Pour paste into wok and simmer 5 minutes until sauce is thick. Serve with rice; garnish with scallions and coriander (if desired).