Broccoli with Five-spice Tofu

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  1. In small bowl, combine shiitakes and hot water to cover.
  2. Let stand until softened, about 30 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, drain tofu and pat dry with paper towels.
  4. Cut into ¾-inch cubes; pat dry again.
  5. In medium bowl, combine tofu, 1 tablespoon soy sauce and five-spice powder; toss gently to coat.
  6. Cover and set aside in refrigerator.
  7. Bring large saucepan of lightly salted water to a boil.
  8. Cut broccoli florets into 1½-inch pieces.
  9. Peel tender portion of stems and cut into ½-inch-thick slices.
  10. (you should have about 4 cups total.
  11. ) add broccoli to boiling water and cook just until bright green and crisp-tender, about 2 to 3 minutes.
  12. Drain, rinse under cold running water and drain again.
  13. Set aside.
  14. In small bowl, mix together cornstarch and 1 tablespoon cold water; set aside.
  15. Remove softened shiitakes from soaking water.
  16. Strain soaking water through a filter paper-lined sieve into medium bowl; stir in broth, brown sugar and remaining 2 tablespoons soy sauce.
  17. Set aside.
  18. Trim and discard shiitake stems; slice caps and set aside.
  19. In large nonstick skillet, heat 2 teaspoons oil over medium-high heat.
  20. Add tofu mixture and cook, shaking pan and tossing tofu, until lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes.
  21. Transfer to plate and set aside.
  22. In same skillet, heat remaining 2 teaspoons oil over medium-high heat.
  23. Add scallions, garlic, ginger, chile paste, anise seeds and reserved shiitakes and stir-fry until fragrant, 30 to 60 seconds.
  24. Add cinnamon stick and reserved broth mixture; bring to a boil and cook 5 minutes.
  25. Stir cornstarch mixture and add to skillet; cook, stirring, until liquid has thickened, about 30 seconds.
  26. Add carrots and reserved broccoli and cook, stirring often, until carrots are tender, about 3 minutes.
  27. Add reserved tofu and toss gently to coat.
  28. Discard cinnamon stick and serve.