Vegetable tempura is an easy and appetizing way to use up leftover vegetables. It can be served as an appetizer, main course, or side dish for one person or a group. Here's how to make vegetable tempura.
Ingredients and supplies:
- Vegetables, assorted
- 1 cup flour
- 1/2 cup corn flour
- 1/4 cup ice water
- 1 cup vegetable or olive oil
- Sesame seeds (optional)
- Soy sauce (for serving)
- Large skillet
- Mixing bowl
- Large spoon
- Tongs or slotted spoon
- Paper towels
Prepare the vegetables. Cut the vegetables into bite-size pieces. You can use nearly any vegetable for vegetable tempura; common choices include bell peppers, squash, carrots, green beans, sweet potatoes, yams, potatoes, shitake mushrooms, bamboo shoots, onion, and okra. Vegetable tempura is a great way to use up pieces of leftover vegetables.
Heat the oil. Over medium-high heat, heat the oil in a large skillet. To check if the oil is hot enough, drop a little of the tempura batter into it. If it does not rise quickly to the top, the oil is not hot enough. Wait until the oil is hot to add the vegetables.
Prepare the batter. Mix the flour and ice water in the mixing bowl until they form a thick batter. Spices can also be added, if desired. Do not over-mix or the finished batter will be chewy. This recipe should provide enough batter for 3-4 people as a main course or about 8 as an appetizer, but it can easily be halved or doubled.
Coat the vegetables. Coat each vegetable piece in the batter mixture, making sure all the sides of each piece are coated. If desired, dip the coated pieces in sesame seeds before frying.
Cook the vegetables. Place the vegetables coated with batter into the hot skillet. Be careful, because the oil can splatter. Cook until the batter becomes crispy and golden brown. Cooking time may range fro a few seconds to 3 minutes depending on the vegetables chosen. Smaller or thinner vegetables will cook faster than larger or denser vegetables. If cooking several types of vegetables or a large quantity of vegetables, you may want to do them in batches instead of cooking all of the vegetables together at one time.
Remove from the skillet. Once fully cooked, carefully remove the vegetables using a pair of tongs or a slotted spoon. Place on a paper towel to soak up the excess oil.
Serve. Vegetable tempura should be served immediately. If allowed to sit too long before serving, they will become soggy. Serve with soy sauce or other dipping sauces.
Vegetable tempura is an easy way to make vegetables appetizing for even the pickiest eaters. This delicious dish is great with rice or as an appetizer.