Fried Stuffed Tofu Recipe (Tahu Isi)

These Deep Fried Stuffed Tofus have some different names in Indonesia beside Tahu Isi such as Tahu Berontak, Gehu, Tahu Bunting, Tahu Susur, Tahu Sumpel. Since I grew up in East Java, I know the name of this dish is Tahu Berontak. Literally, Tahu means Tofu and Berontak means Struggle. What a weird name! Tahu Isi name makes sense more which is meant stuffed tofu; isi = stuff/fill

There are so many versions of tahu isi/tahu berontak. I like stuffing the tofu with bean sprouts and/or carrots and shrimp. As a recipe of Tahu Pong Semarang, I used the same kind of shrimp, pink shrimp. You can always make these fried stuffed tofus go vegan by omitting the shrimp.

Fried stuffed tofus (tahu isi/tahu berontak/gehu/tahu susur/tahu bunting) are very common to be found any street food sellers that offer other fritter foods such as fried banana, fried tempe, fried cassava. However when you go to these sellers you may find the no-shrimp version more to cut the cost ^_^. Indonesians love to enjoy these fried stuffed tofu with bird eye chilies. Some places have sambal kacang (peanut sambal) or sambal petis (dark shrimp paste sambal) ready to company as well.

Tip: Drain tofus on brown paper bags, it’ll absorb oil but won’t make the tofus soggy like draining on paper towels will (Thanks to Wandering Chopsticks for this tip).

Tahu Isi (Tahu Berontak/Tahu Susur/Gehu/Tahu Bunting)
- Stuffed Tofu
recipe: Yasaboga, modified by me

Ingredients:
6 extra firm tofus (hard Asian tofu is best), cut diagonal from corner to corner

Stuffing:
100 g pink shrimp, chopped
100 g bean sprouts
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 shallots, chopped
1 tbsp chopped Chinese celery
2 tbsps sliced green onions
1/2 tsp white peppercorns, ground
1/2 tsp salt

Batter:
100 g rice flour
1 tbsp tapioca starch
3 cloves garlic
1 tsp coriander, toasted and ground
3 candlenuts, grated
2 tsp ground kencur (kaempferia galangal) or 1 tsp fresh peeled and minced kencur
1/2 tsp salt
125 cc cold water (4°C)

Directions:
1. Use a spoon (a grapefruit spoon works great here) to remove the tofu from the middle of each triangle. Go as deep as you can, being careful to keep the pouch intact. Set aside the tofu that you take out of the middle–you will use it for stuffing.

2. Combine middle part of tofu with other stuffing ingredients.  Using a small spoon or your hand, gently stuff each piece of tofu with as much stuffing mixture as you can fit in.

3. Mix dry ingredients for batter and add cold water; stir evenly.

4. Dip gently the stuffed tofu into batter.

5. Deep fried in hot oil until it turn golden brown and cooked through. Serve with bird eyes chilies.

Cook’s Note: for those who can’t find any kencur, just omit it.

About the Author

An Indonesian born who lives on the Prairie land of Canada. Indonesia Eats is a memoir of her homeland.