Thai sweet-and-sour tofu Picture: Independent
Thai sweet-and-sour tofu (Serves 2)

The sweet-and-sour flavour is very much associated with China, but many Southeast Asian countries have their own variants. My mum taught me this one, which uses no artificial colours, so you can achieve that vibrant red associated with sweet-and-sour dishes without skimping on quality. 

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 garlic cloves, chopped
¼ red pepper, chopped
¼ green pepper, chopped
50g cucumber,
thickly sliced
4 cherry tomatoes
¼ onion, chopped
50g fresh pineapple, cut into cubes
2 tablespoons tomato ketchup
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
½ teaspoon Chinese rice wine
1 tablespoon soy sauce
½ tablespoon granulated sugar
250g soft tofu, cut into pieces
1 spring onion, chopped

Heat the oil in a wok over a high heat, add the garlic and stir-fry for about 10 seconds until golden brown. 
Add the red and green peppers, cucumber, tomatoes, onion and pineapple, then stir in the tomato ketchup. 
Add the rice vinegar, Chinese wine, soy sauce and sugar and stir to mix well. 
Add the tofu and stir-fry for 30 seconds, then serve topped with the spring onion.

The Independent