Tempura 天ぷら

japanese-tempura

I cannot believe I haven’t posted a Tempura recipe before! I’ve thought about it for a very long time but it seems like another recipe always pushes it to the back burner. Well not anymore. I’ve actually been testing various Tempura recipes for the past few months and I think it’s finally perfect.

Tempura isn’t a difficult dish to master but there are a few very important steps you must follow so you get a very light and crispy batter. Most restaurants in the United States do not know how to make Tempura correctly so I rarely eat it out when I’m at our Seattle home. If your Tempura has a one inch thick coating of batter that’s just wrong. The batter on Tempura is supposed to just barely cover the ingredients like a thin veil. That is what great Tempura is supposed to be like and after you read my recipe you’ll be able to do this at home!

I used beautiful lobster tails provided to me by LobsterAnywhere.com in this recipe. They contacted me a couple weeks ago asking if I could help them with a Tempura recipe. I was planning this post so it was perfect timing. Of course you can use Shrimp, Scallops or any type of vegetable you like for your Tempura, the batter recipe will be the same. Just remember to follow the steps below.

Tempura, Serves 4

6 small Lobster Tails or 10 large Shrimp or Sea Scallops
8-10 Shiitake Mushrooms or mushrooms of your choice, stems trimmed
8-10 Asparagus Spears, ends trimmed

Tempura Batter:

1 large egg, chilled
3/4 cup ice water (fill a cup with ice water and measure from that or use cold water from the refrigerator)
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons chilled, sifted Japanese flour (I use the Nissin Violet flour) or cake flour

You’ll also need:

1 chilled medium sized mixing bowl (I use a glass bowl)
Extra chilled & sifted flour to dredge the ingredients
Oil of your choice for frying (I use Rice Bran Oil or Canola Oil)
Grated Daikon Radish
Lemon wedges
Sea Salt

(Note: put all of your ingredients plus the mixing bowl in the refrigerator at least an hour before making the batter. Everything has to be the same temperature including the mixing bowl. This is very important to get a light & crispy batter)

In a medium sized Dutch-oven or Wok heat 3 1/2 inches of oil to 355 degrees.

Place the sifted flour for the batter in a small bowl and set aside.

Whisk the egg and ice water in the chilled medium mixing bowl until completely combined, add the flour, whisking very gently (I like to punch the batter with the whisk in an up & down motion a few times) until just combined. Do not over mix, this is very important. You want the batter to be lumpy and some flour still coating the side of the bowl.

Put the extra sifted flour on a baking sheet. This makes it easy to dredge the ingredients before you dip them in the batter.

Lightly dredge the lobster tails or shrimp and vegetables in flour, dip in batter, and using tongs or long cooking chopsticks, fry in the hot oil, being careful not to overcrowd the pan, until lightly golden and cooked through. Transfer to a paper towel-lined baking sheet or rack to drain. Allow oil to reheat between batches. Repeat with remaining ingredients.

Transfer vegetable and shrimp tempura to a serving platter; serve with lemon and sea salt and the traditional dipping sauce on the side, recipe below.

Tentsuyu (Tempura Dipping Sauce)

1 2-inch piece of dried Kombu (dried Kelp)
2 cups of Water
1/2 cup Mirin
1/2 cup Soy Sauce
1 cup Katsuobushi (dried Bonito flakes)

Place piece of Kombu on to the 2 cups of water and let sit for ten minutes then remove Kombu.. Place a small saucepan over medium high heat add the Mirin. Cook Mirin for one minute to burn off the alcohol. Add the Kombu water, soy sauce and Katsuobushi to the Mirin and bring back to a boil. As soon as it comes to a boil remove from heat and strain. Transfer to small individual serving bowls and add about 1 Tablespoon of grated Daikon to each dish.

*Note: Kombu and Katsuobushi are available at most Asian grocery stores or on Amazon.com.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Japanese Tempura 天ぷら
Serves: 4
 
Ingredients
  • Tempura, Serves 4
  • 6 small Lobster Tails or 10 large Shrimp or Sea Scallops
  • 8-10 Shiitake Mushrooms or mushrooms of your choice, stems trimmed
  • 8-10 Asparagus Spears, ends trimmed
  • Tempura Batter:
  • 1 large egg, chilled
  • ¾ cup ice water (fill a cup with ice water and measure from that or use cold water from the refrigerator)
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons chilled, sifted Japanese flour (I use the Nissin Violet flour) or cake flour
  • You'll also need:
  • 1 chilled medium sized mixing bowl (I use a glass bowl)
  • Extra chilled & sifted flour to dredge the ingredients
  • Oil of your choice for frying (I use Rice Bran Oil or Canola Oil)
  • Grated Daikon Radish
  • Lemon wedges
  • Sea Salt
  • (Note: put all of your ingredients plus the mixing bowl in the refrigerator at least an hour before making the batter. Everything has to be the same temperature including the mixing bowl. This is very important to get a light & crispy batter)
  • Tentsuyu (Tempura Dipping Sauce)
  • 1 2-inch piece of dried Kombu (dried Kelp)
  • 2 cups of Water
  • ½ cup Mirin
  • ½ cup Soy Sauce
  • 1 cup Katsuobushi (dried Bonito flakes)
Instructions
  1. In a medium sized Dutch-oven or Wok heat 3½ inches of oil to 355 degrees.
  2. Place the sifted flour for the batter in a small bowl and set aside.
  3. Whisk the egg and ice water in the chilled medium mixing bowl until completely combined, add the flour, whisking very gently (I like to punch the batter with the whisk in an up & down motion a few times) until just combined. Do not over mix, this is very important. You want the batter to be lumpy and some flour still coating the side of the bowl.
  4. Put the extra sifted flour on a baking sheet. This makes it easy to dredge the ingredients before you dip them in the batter.
  5. Lightly dredge the lobster tails or shrimp and vegetables in flour, dip in batter, and using tongs or long cooking chopsticks, fry in the hot oil, being careful not to overcrowd the pan, until lightly golden and cooked through. Transfer to a paper towel-lined baking sheet or rack to drain. Allow oil to reheat between batches. Repeat with remaining ingredients.
  6. Transfer vegetable and shrimp tempura to a serving platter; serve with lemon and sea salt and the traditional dipping sauce on the side, recipe below.
  7. Tentsuyu (Tempura Dipping Sauce)
  8. Place piece of Kombu on to the 2 cups of water and let sit for ten minutes then remove Kombu.. Place a small saucepan over medium high heat add the Mirin. Cook Mirin for one minute to burn off the alcohol. Add the Kombu water, soy sauce and Katsuobushi to the Mirin and bring back to a boil. As soon as it comes to a boil remove from heat and strain. Transfer to small individual serving bowls and add about 1 Tablespoon of grated Daikon to each dish.

 

Comments

  1. Millette Kish says:

    Shirley,

    Thank you, Thank you! I am looking forward to achieving great Tempura results with your detailed recipe!

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