Do you like tempura? I like tempura but I wasn’t interested in going out for tempura so Curt decided to try it at home and except for the prep it was pretty easy. First step of course was to find a recipe and since he had never done this before, two were chosen and he came up with a hybrid, plus a dipping sauce. And the recipes with their annotations took up prime space in the kitchen for quick reference.
Once the batter was mixed and the shrimp and vegetables (beans and green peppers from our garden, onion and sweet potato from the market) were all trimmed and cut, the cooking area was organized for smooth working.
In this picture from bottom right to top left: vegetables, tongs, spider, batter, oil in wok, drain pan. So once this was set up it was a simple matter of putting the veggies and shrimp in the batter, in the oil, fry till golden and move to drain pan.
Once the food was done it was moved immediately to the table. You don’t want to dilly-dally with the tempura – eat it while it’s hot and crispy. So make sure your dipping sauce has been prepared ahead of time.
If you have guests you might want to serve your finished tempura on a large serving plate but we just took the tray we used at the stove to the table. Give each guest a bowl of dipping sauce, a glass of wine and chopsticks. Let’s eat! Recipes follow.
1 C. beer ( do not use dark beer)
1/2 C. rice flour
1/2 C. wheat flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper (opt.)
1 egg yolk
vegetable oil (for deep frying)
Your choice of vegetables cut into similar sized pieces
In a bowl whisk beer w/ the rice flour until smooth. Add in salt, and cayenne if using.
Let sit at room temperature for 10 minutes.
Heat oil to 375 degrees.
Dredge the fish and veggies in the batter, coating completely, letting any excess drip off and put into oil. Deep fry turning once until golden ( about 3 minutes.)
Transfer to brown paper or rack lined with several layers of paper towel to drain.
Sprinkle with seasoning salt.
TEMPURA DIPPING SAUCE
1 C. dashi soup stock or fish stock (fish bullion)
1/4 C. mirin (sweet saki)
1/4 C. light soy sauce
1/2 Tbs sugar
Put dashi, mirin, soy sauce, and sugar in a bowl and mix well. Added some grated ginger if you like. Put in individual small bowls for serving.