In China’s eating culture, Mapo Toufu is a household word. An outstanding representative of Sichuan Cuisine, the dish boasts a strong spicy, numbing taste and soy sauce fragrance. Eating the dish, your tongue soon starts to tingle and vibrate with a fiery feel.
Chengdu Chenmapo, now one of the time-honored brand names in China, started from a small restaurant in Chengdu. Its proprietor Chen Fuchun died early, and the restaurant was run by the widowed Ms Chen. Patrons of the restaurant included porters who carried oil for shops. These workers would buy some cheap food like beancurd and beef, and leave them (with some oil ladled from the oil jar they were carrying) to Ms Chen for her to prepare a dinner. Ms Chen, then, gradually developed a unique process of cooking beancurd, making the dish a best-seller in Chengdu. People named the dish after its inventor Ms Chen who had visible smallpox on her face (known as “mapo” in local dialect).
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