Vegetable Tempura

>> October 25, 2011

After learning how to make a proper tempura batter and dip, this has become one of our top favorites. I first got the inspiration to make some vegetable tempura from Natalie's kitchen, Cook Eat Live Vegetarian, my #1 avenue when I run out of dinner ideas.

Here are a number of vegetables you can use for your vegetable tempura:

- Green french beans
- Carrots
- Aubergines
- Okra
- Potatoes/sweet potatoes
- Onion rings
- Mushrooms
- Peppers

Natalie's blog led me to Naomi's recipe where it contains the simple recipe how to make the batter and dipping sauce, plus a youtube video that taught me a very handy technique to fry the veggie tempura.

So here it goes!

Dipping Sauce:

- 1/3 cup dashi (or 1/3 cup water + 1/2 tsp. Hondashi)
- 3 Tbsp. kikoman soy sauce
- 2 Tbsp. sake
- 2 tsp. sugar

1. Simmer the ingredients in a sauce pan to dissolve the ingredients.
2. When it's boiling, remove from heat and set aside.

Tempura Batter

- 100 g all purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1 egg yolk, beaten
- 200 ml ice water
- Cornstarch for dusting
- Vegetable oil for deep frying

* Chop your veggies. If you are including french beans, tie about 6 pieces using chives to keep it together. After vegetables are ready, heat up your cooking oil. While waiting, prepare your batter.

1. Put all dry ingredients together in a mixing bowl. Whisk it.
2. Add the ice water in the bowl of beaten egg yolk and blend. Put 2 ice cubes in it. It's important to keep the mixture cold because the crispiness relies on this.
3. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture. Mix them using chopsticks, in one direction, for about 10x. It's ok to have some chunks in it. According to Naomi's recipe, the idea is to not produce gluten to make a crunchy tempura.
4. Dust off your vegetables with cornstarch.
5. When the oil is hot and ready, dip the veggies in the batter and fry away. Do not over crowd the frying pan.

Here's the video of the frying technique I was talking about. What and learn.

Happy eating!


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Bubble Blahs

I work and live at night time. I am a person deprived of natural light. I rarely cook in the morning as I'm almost always asleep, else busy with house chores. As much as I love natural light in my photography, I'm afraid I don't usually have that luxury, unless I sacrifice my sleep, or make an effort to stay up longer during the day to do a cooking + photo session. So I depend on my flash, and sometimes, available light from my fluorescent bulbs. Although, in my opinion, nothing beats the natural light, I am, so far, satisfied with my shots using my flash that I learned to love.

I always look forward to the weekends for some sunlight.

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