This short-cut version of a Sichuan classic replaces ground meat with crumbled tofu and mushrooms and leans heavily on pantry ingredients to deliver big flavour, fast. Instead of preparing my own chili oil I use jarred chili crisp, which although unconventional, lends the perfect amount of crunch and keeps things weeknight-friendly. Feel free to toss in greens like spinach or bok choy along with the hot noodles to add some veg to this dish.
Crumble drained tofu into small pieces so that it resembles ground meat. Pulse mushrooms in a food processor until finely minced, or very finely chop with a knife.
Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high. Add crumbled tofu and mushrooms to the skillet and season with salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until browned and crisp, 12-15 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a large bowl whisk together all sauce ingredients until well combined.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add noodles and cook according to package instructions. Drain noodles, reserving ¾ cup of cooking liquid.
Whisk ½ cup of reserved cooking liquid into sauce.
Add cooked noodles, tofu-mushroom mixture and herbs to bowl with sauce and toss until noodles and tofu are well coated.
Stir in more of the cooking liquid, a little at a time, if needed, to help the sauce come together and stick to the noodles.
Garnish with green onions and cilantro and serve.