Bean curd (Toufu)
In the 1980s, a story in International Economic Preview published in the United States predicted that in the coming 10 years, it's not the automobiles, televisions or electronic products that will have the greatest market potential, the biggest success market potential, the biggest success belongs to bean curd from China.
Obviously, the author is a big fan of bean curd. Although bean curd has not attained such huge success as predicted, it does enjoy equal fame as tea and porcelain from China. It is said that a French artist is fascinated by bean curd. Whenever he feels ill, he would get some bean curd from the China Town in Paris and it never fails him. For most Chinese, the love of bean curd comes from its special taste. Like many inventions that came out of total accidents, bean curd was not invented intentionally. Liu An, a grandson of Lu Bang, founder of the Han Dynasty (206BC-AD 220), hired many alchemists to make pills of immortality. The Prince of Huainan couldn't escape death, but his experiments brought an unexpected result-bean curd. Liu's hometown, Shouxian county of East China's Anhui province, is known as the Hometown of Bean Curd. Today, any common family in Shouxian can easily cover a table with dishes that all contain bean curd. Bean curd has an amazing adaptability. Each family can easily make the cold dish named bean curd mixed with Chinese onion. The most famous Sichuan dish mapo doufu is hot, tender and salty with pepper and Chinese prickly ash. There are hundreds of notable dishes featuring bean curd as the man material. Among Chinese chefs, bean curd is listed as one of four top vegetarian materials. However, many temples have invented bean curd dishes that look and taste just like meat to cater to pilgrims. Such a rich variety makes everyone marvel at the great potentials of bean curd.
Bean curd (Toufu)