Mixed Vegetable & Shrimp Tempura

I was lucky to learn the secret to a light and crispy tempura batter while living in Japan and it’s simple!
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Japanese
Keyword: kakiage, prawns, tempura, vegetables
Servings: 4
Author: Fiona Uyema

Ingredients

  • 200g shrimps
  • vegetable oil for deep-frying
  • Cooked noodles to serve
  • lemon wedges to serve
  • freshly ground sea salt to serve (optional)

For the vegetable mix

  • 80 g sweet potato cut into matchsticks with the skin still on
  • 80 g carrots peeled and cut into matchsticks
  • 50 g kale stalk removed and roughly chopped
  • 100 g onion peeled and cut into thin strips
  • 2 tbsp cornflour

For the batter

  • 1 egg yolk
  • 200 ml ice-cold water
  • a few ice cubes
  • 150 g flour sieved
  • 50 g cornflour sieved

For the dipping sauce

  • 100 ml dashi stock homemade dashi stock or 100ml of water and a sprinkle of dashi instant granules
  • 20 ml mirin
  • 20 ml Fused Soy Sauce shop
  • Ginger/daikon grated (optional)

Instructions

  • Put all the ingredients for the dipping sauce into a saucepan and let them simmer for a few minutes, then set aside and let cool.
  • Mix all the vegetables in a large bowl and, using your hands, evenly coat them in cornflour, then set aside.
  • Do the same for the shrimp in a separate bowl.
  • Beat the egg yolk and ice cold water in a large bowl. Toss in a few ice cubes to keep the water cold.
  • Gradually add the flour and cornflour to the water/egg mix and then lightly mix. It’s OK to leave lumps in the batter.
  • Toss all the vegetables into the batter mix and ensure they are all equally coated. Next do the same for teh shrimp.
  • Heat the oil in a large, heavy-based saucepan to 170ºC (medium/high heat). Drop a bit of batter in the oil to check the temperature. If the batter rises slowly to the top of the oil, starts to sizzle and slowly turns a golden-brown colour, then the temperature is right.
  • Put a large tablespoon of the tempura vegetable mix on a large wooden spoon and slowly place in the oil against the side of the saucepan. Use a large spoon or chopsticks to slide the tempura mix off the wooden spoon and into the oil. Remove the wooden spoon slowly once the tempura mix is secure and firmly bound together.
  • Deep-fry the tempura until it is golden brown, turning a few times. Repeat with all tempura vegetables and shrimp. Drain on kitchen paper to absorb any excess oil.
  • Serve with noodles and either the dipping sauce or lemon wedges and a sprinkle of freshly ground sea salt.

Notes

TIPS
Don’t overmix the batter and use ice-cold water. Overmixing the batter will activate
the gluten, leaving the batter heavy and doughy, so lumps are OK.
For vegetarians use a vegetarian-based dashi stock using seaweed and/or shiitake mushrooms.
Make sure none of the ice cubes are caught in the kakiage before you place it in the hot oil.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
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