Online Recipe Book


How To Cook Everything, by Mark Bittman, c2008, page 101
2 servings
Prep info
20 min
Prep time
Not set
Cook time
20 minutes
Time required
20 minutes
Oven preheat
Mains - Misc


  • oil (for frying)
  • 2/3 c water
  • 160 g ice
  • 2/3 lb vegetables (assorted: zucchini, eggplant, winter squash or sweet potatoes, mushrooms, bell pepper, green beans, broccoli, cauliflower, leeks, onions)
  • 75 g meat (seafood or chicken: firm white fish, like cod or haddock, cut into chunks; or 6 to 8 large shrimp, peeled and sliced in half lengthwise; or chicken tenders, cut into thin strips)
  • Soy Dipping Sauce and Marinade (or lemon wedges, to serve)
  • 63 g Flour (Plain)
  • 1 egg yolk
  • Flour (Plain) (as needed for dredging)


Put at least 2" of oil in a deep pan on the stove over medium-high heat; bring to 350F.  Combine water and ice; let sit.  While the oil is heating, prepare the vegetables, the meat, and the sauce.

Measure 2/3 cup water from the ice water.  Beat lightly with 63g of the flour and the egg yolk; the batter should be lumpy and quite thin.

One piece at a time, dredge the vegetables and shrimp in the remaining flour, then dip in the batter.  Fry each piece until golden, turning once if necessary, less than 5 minutes total.  Drain on paper towels and serve immediately, with the dipping sauce or lemon wedges.


Notes from source: Where do you draw the line between appetizer and "real" dishes?  I don't know, but tempura works either way.  If you're serving only a couple of people, it's easy to deep-fry enough food.  It's when you have a crowd that it gets difficult.  But if you want to deep-fry a few tidbits of fish, shrimp, chicken, and/or vegetables for a number of people, tempura is among the lightest and easiest of the batter-fried foods.  Serve immediately; like many fried foods, it's best eaten standing up, around the stove.  But it will hold in a low oven for a few minutes.

SJ Note 13 May 2011: Very tasty!  We just did fish this time (had something else with vegetables already in the meal).  Definitely a keeper!