Food & Wine

The 'secret' ingredient deployed by a Fuzhou smelly tofu maker

Updated: 02 Jun 2010
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Read more on smelly tofu   stinky tofu   human faeces   Fuzhou   MSG  
Stinky or smelly tofu, a form of fermented tofu, is a popular
snack and usually found at night markets or roadside stands.
Stinky or smelly tofu is a form of fermented tofu that has a strong odor. It is a popular snack in East and Southeast Asia, particularly in mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, where it is usually found at night markets or roadside stands, or as a side dish in lunch bars.
The traditional method for producing stinky tofu is to prepare a brine made from fermented milk, vegetables, and meat. The brine fermentation can take as long as several months.
Unfortunately, some merchants, eager to quicken process and receive instant profits, make stinky tofu in a different way. 
A video from Youku shows how a Fuzhou merchant makes the stinky tofu.
Recently, an online video has become hot among netizens as a Fuzhou tofu merchant exposed the inside story of making stinky tofu. What is incredible is that human faeces are used in the making of this "delicious" stinky tofu.
Though the authenticity of the video is doubted by some netizens, it again sounds alarm on food sanitation and pricks Chinese conscience.
The horrible process of making stinky tofu from the video is as follows:
1). Collect human faeces in a container.
2). Put rotten pork into the filtrated faecal water to let it leaven. During the fermentation process, maggots develop and grow. Then, use DDVP to kill the maggots. In this way, they get the needed lac fermentum.  
3). Mix the lac fermentum with a certain chemical agent for precipitation, and then collect some filtrated faecal water in a bottle. When the peddler sells tofu in the street, he will make the fresh tofu stinky by spraying the well prepared faecal water.
4). It usually takes over 2 hours to make stinky tofu in winter. However, it only takes 20 minutes in summer.
5). When the tofu is fried and spiced with salt, pepper, MSG and ground poppy seed, it will be the so-called "delicious" stinky tofu.
Next time when you are invited by your Chinese host to savor this smelly tofu, you may want to bring out this story. However, WOX does NOT vow to the truth of the story.

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Comments Area ( Total Comments: 5 )
SeanCWong Commented on 23 Jul 2013
Canada Commented on 16 May 2013
I will just eat at home from now on.
alexynne Commented on 31 Jan 2013
And oh by the way, even if this story is true or not, I won't even dare eat it!
alexynne Commented on 31 Jan 2013
Thank God I was never tempted to try those stinky tofus even if they say it's delicious! And now that I know how they make it, NO f way will I ever eat it!
Button Commented on 23 Sep 2012
Not that I have ever eaten it, but now I will NEVER eat it.
Bloody hell.

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