Vegetable Tempura: Recipe Swap

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    I once again decided to participate in the recipe swap with my online cooking board.  The theme for this weeks swap was Asian recipes.   I was excited when I received a recipe for Vegetable Tempura.  Whenever I go to our local Asian kitchen I always order the vegetable tempura with my meal.  I love the crunchy coating on the outside of the vegetables and the awesome dipping sauce that goes with it.

     I have actually never thought about making my own tempura.  I’m not very good at deep frying foods and it seems as though it would be difficult to make.  I was pleasantly surprised to find out that the recipe was very basic and sounded easy!  The hardest part was deciding which vegetables to use as part of the tempura.  I knew for sure I wanted broccoli and onions, but wasn’t sure what else to go with.  I finally decided on acorn squash and yellow squash.

     Earlier in the day I made the tempura dipping sauce and cut up all my vegetables.  I also made the batter and put it in the refrigerator.  I didn’t take anything out until the oil was already heating up.  I was a little apprehensive when I put the first batch into the oil but I was thrilled when I pulled the vegetables out and they looked very similar to the ones I get at the local Asian kitchen!  I quickly added a few more batches and we ate the vegetable tempura with the dipping sauce.

    It was so good!  The vegetables were crunchy and golden brown and the dipping sauce was amazing.  I was surprised with how well it turned out.  My husband thought it was great as well.  Next time he wants to try shrimp tempura as well.  He also thought this would be an impressive appetizer to serve at a party.  I totally agree.  It would take some work, but it goes fairly quickly, is really tasty, and is totally impressive.  We will be having this again for sure!

Vegetable Tempura (adapted from I Was Born to Cook as seen on Itsy Bitsy Foodies )

For the Tempura:
1 onion, peeled and cut into rings
1 acorn squash, peeled and cut into thin slices
1 yellow squash, cut into 1/2 in discs

1 bunch broccoli, broken into florets
canola oil for frying

For tempura batter:
1 egg, beaten
1 1/2 c. cold water
1 1/2 c. flour
2 ice cubes

For tempura sauce:
1/4 c. water
1 T. soy sauce
1 T. rice vinegar
1 T. oyster sauce

1.  Combine all sauce ingredients in a small sauce pan.  Bring to a boil and reduce heat.  Simmer for 2-3 minutes.  Remove from heat and cool.

2.  To make the batter mix the egg and water in a medium bowl.  Add in the flour and mix until combined, not over mixing.  There should still be a few lumps in it.  Put the two ice cubes in the bowl and place in the refrigerator until ready to use.  (This will help keep batter ice cold)
3.  Prepare the vegetables.  If you are not ready to use them place in the refrigerator until time to use.
4.  Heat oil in a wok or a large skillet over medium high heat.  When the oil is ready dip the vegetables a few at a time into the batter and place in the oil.  Heat for 3-4 minutes or until the tempura is a golden brown.  Heat in batches so as not to crowd the vegetables and lower the temperature of the oil.  Remove with a slotted spoon.  Place vegetables on a cooling rack positioned over top of a cookie sheet to catch excess oil.  Serve immediately with dipping sauce.

This post linked to:
Fat Camp Friday, Friday Potluck

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