Saturday, February 20, 2010

Tempura mushrooms

Well time to fess up my diet hasn't been going so well no big surprize there. I was so excited about dieting at the beginning of the year yes the battle of the buldge was about to be conquered! I gave up all but my morning Pepsi and drank water the rest of the day. I ate a bit healthier no more baking cookies, cakes, brownies or candies. I also started excercising ugggg..... I did lose a few pounds but when I woke up one morning and seen I had gained several pounds overnight I said "what the heck if I am going to gain weight anyway I might as well enjoy myself while doing it". I now regained my senses but still splurge from time to time on the foods that I love. Foods like these delicious tempura mushrooms. I am not very good at cooking asian cuisine but I really like tempura because it is so easy and, well lets face it anything fried is going to taste good. With tempura you can fry just about anything, vegetables, fish, shrimp, you name it you can fry it. There are so many versions of tempura batter recipes out there but this is the one I use.
Simple Tempura Batter
1 cup of flour
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 1/2 cups of ice water (you can substitute an equal amount of seltzer water or beer)

At least two inches of Oil for deep frying

Get fancy Optional additions
1 teaspoon baking powder to make it light and fluffy
1/2 teaspoon salt
(Yellow food coloring optional)

Heat oil to 350
Combine all other ingredients. (do not over mix lumps are fine just 5 or six good stirs)
WARNING!!! When cooking mushrooms allow them to cool a bit before serving as the juice from the mushroom is EXTREMLY HOT!!!!

Clean the mushroom with a dry rag (oil and water don't mix).

Dip the mushrooms in the batter

Gently place your mushrooms in hot oil.
You can use this batter for any of your favorite vegetables. You can also use this batter for any kid of seafood, shrimp, scallops, fish or even use it for chicken.

Tip 1: Ice

Use ice water for the batter. This is really important to prevent the batter from absorbing too much oil.
Tip 2: Batter (Tempura Batter Recipe)
Do not make the batter ahead of time. Try not to over mix the batter and not to coat ingredients with the batter too much.
Tip 3: Frying Order
If you are frying both seafood and vegetables, fry vegetables first. Then, fry seafood. Fry vegetables at 340F degree and fry seafood at 350F degree.