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Chao rubing (Naxi-style fried goat’s cheese, spring onions and tomatoes)

I first ate this delicious dish in Lijiang a couple of years ago. In this version I've used haloumi in place of the rubing, but you could substitute another non-melting firm cheese.

By Tony Tan
  • 15 mins preparation
  • 10 mins cooking
  • Serves 4
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Naxi-style fried goat’s cheese, spring onions and tomatoes (Chao rubing)
Rubing, meaning milk cake, is a firm white goat's cheese sold in markets throughout Yunnan," says Tony Tan. "It's made by the Yi, Naxi, Sani and other ethnic groups. Similar to haloumi, it's often eaten grilled or fried with sugar and a mixture of chilli and Sichuan peppercorns, or treated like tofu. I first ate this delicious dish in Lijiang a couple of years ago.


  • 80 ml vegetable oil (1/3 cup)
  • 400 gm haloumi, thickly sliced
  • 1 onion, cut into wedges
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • ¼ green or red capsicum, diced
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped ginger
  • 5 dried long red chillies, or to taste, seeds removed, thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp Sichuan peppercorns
  • 4 spring onions, thinly sliced, some green tops reserved to serve
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tsp Chinkiang vinegar
  • 2 tsp Sichuan pepper oil (optional; see note)
  • 10 cherry tomatoes


  • 1
    Heat 60ml oil in a wok over medium heat, add cheese and turn occasionally until golden. Remove cheese with a slotted spoon, set aside on absorbent paper and discard oil. Wipe out wok with absorbent paper.
  • 2
    Heat remaining oil in wok over medium-high heat, add onion and garlic and stir-fry until golden (2-4 minutes). Add capsicum, ginger, chilli, Sichuan peppercorns and spring onion and stir-fry for 30 seconds, then return cheese to wok. Add soy sauce, vinegar and Sichuan pepper oil, reduce heat to medium and stir-fry for 1-2 minutes. If mixture is dry, add a splash of water. Add tomatoes to warm through, scatter with remaining spring onion and serve hot.


Note Sichuan pepper oil is available from Asian grocers.
Drink Suggestion: Barrel-fermented sauvignon blanc. Drink suggestion by Max Allen