Recipe Review - Crispy Tofu Donburi bowl

Vegan Japanse dish with Ginger Teriyaki  sauce. What do you think is the verdict from the family? 

Short Summary

💖 Overall                👌👌
✌ Taste                   👌👌👌👌
👶 Kids Approved     Hated it
💪 Difficulty               Easy


This dish is easy to make, though frying the tofu is a bit time consuming as it best to do it in batches to a achieve a nice crispy crust. 

Samphire is a bit of a difficult to find ingredient, my local market had it and I also saw it at the fish stand in my local market. It is salty and a bit chewy. Can be replaced with spinach, but I preferred the dish with samphire. 

Ice cold water stops the cooking process. 

Coating tofu in corn flower make it extra crispy when frying. I really loved the tofu. I did not have shichimi to add to the corn flour so I replaced with salt and pepper. 

Sauce is easy to make. 

Taste and flavour

This dish was not a hit with the family. While everyone loved the crispy tofu, the overall dish did not impress. My husband (who is a meat aficionado since birth) hated the lack of meat and thought it was lacking depth of flavour. My kids though it was too salty, while I liked the tofu and the sauce, but I thought it was overall rather underwhelming

Is it worth it?

I was asked not to make this dish again!! 😟

Crispy Tofu Donburi Bowl


175g brown or white short grain rice 
250ml water (200ml for white rice) 
240g firm tofu
20g corn flour 
2 tsp shichimi, seven spice powder oil for deep frying
80g samphire (or spinach)
1 tbsp Toasted ground sesame seeds 1 tbsp black sesame seeds 
Ginger Teriyaki sauce 
6 tbsp soy sauce
3 tbsp mirin
1 tbsp sugar 
3 tbsp water
1⁄2 tbsp grated ginger
1⁄2 tsp corn flour with 1 tbsp of water (for thickening sauce)


  1. Cook rice according to package instructions. 
  2. Prepare the sauce by mixing all the sauce ingredients in a saucepan except for corn flour and heat to boil. Once it comes to boil turn the heat off and leave it in a saucepan. 
  3. Cut tofu into 2cm cubes 
  4. If you are using samphire - add samphire into a pot of boiling water. Do not put any salt as samphire is quite salty . Boil them for one minute.  If you are using spinach – add 1tsp salt into a pot of  boiling water. Boil for 20 seconds. Once ready drain samphire or spinach under cold water and straight into ice cold water. Drain and leave it aside in room temperature. 
  5. Mix corn flour and seven spice powder on a large plate. Pat dry tofu cubes well and then dust them with corn flour and spice mixture. Deep fry them in oil for about 2 minutes or until they become light golden colour. Take them out onto layered kitchen paper and then straight into the sauce mixture. And then gently mix. 
  6. Turn the heat on for the sauce to boil and then stir in corn flour and water mixture into the pan. Once the sauce thickened, turn it off. 
  7. Scoop rice into each bowls. Lay samphire on top of rice and then sprinkle ground sesame seeds over. And then top with tofu cubes. Pour over remaining sauce then lastly sprinkle black sesame seeds.