Tempura Green Peppers with Dipping Sauce

2 Sep

First of all, sorry for my lack of posts recently. I’ve had some sort of virus and I couldn’t eat. I know, it was awful. Everything made me feel sick, even the smell of food was repulsive. I haven’t cooked anything for a week. The Washer Up has been surviving on pasta (and beer obviously) and is now desperate for something different.

This has been on my “to make” list ever since these beautiful long emerald peppers first made an appearance in the fields where we walk the dog about  a month ago. They are known as frying peppers here and are used in a typically Andaluz dish called Pimientos Fritos (fried peppers) where they are simply fried in lots of good olive oil and sprinkled with sea salt.

This Spanish/Japanese fusion came to me because I wanted to do something a little different from the usual fried peppers and I saw Nami’s recipe for Shrimp Tempura. She also posted a video of a Japanese chef making proper tempura and I was intrigued. It looked light, airy, crispy and delicate. A million miles away from the doughy excuses you get for tempura in most places.

They are not perfect but I’m really pleased with my first attempt at making tempura. They are light, crispy and gorgeous with the dipping sauce. It’s not as hard as I thought. The kitchen’s a bit of  a state though, better clean that up before The Washer Up gets home…

I’d definitely recommend heading over to Nami’s blog and watching the video if you are going to have a go at this. It’s amazing to watch and so much easier than me trying to explain it!

Green Pepper Tempura with Dipping Sauce Recipe

Serves 2, vegan. Adapted from Just One Cookbook

  • 4 medium long green peppers (frying peppers)
  • 2 or 3 tbsp cornflour (cornstarch, maizena)
  • 100 gr (3/4 cup) flour. I’m going to try it with rice flour next time.
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 200 ml iced water
  • oil for deep-frying

For the dipping sauce:

  • 75 ml (1/3 cup) water
  • 1/2 tsp dashi flakes/powder (I used ajishima no dashi)
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp rice wine or sake
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • a pinch of shichimi (a Japanese 7 spice chilli pepper mix)
  • salt & shichimi to serve

First make the dipping sauce. Heat all the ingredients in a small sauce pan over a medium high heat, stirring to dissolve the dashi. When boiling remove from the heat and set aside to cool.

Cut your peppers in half lengthways, through the stalk so that both sides has a bit of stalk to pick them up with. Lay them on a plate and sieve over the cornflour. Turn the peppers in the cornflour until evenly coated. Heat up your oil in a wok or deep frying pan over a medium high heat, 170 C.

Sieve the flour, baking powder & salt into a bowl and whisk in the ice-cold water until just combined to make a batter. Don’t over whisk. 

Dip your peppers into the batter and coat them well (you will need to do it in two batches). Carefully lower them into the hot oil and sprinkle over some more batter from a height with your fingers. This gives it that extra light crispy coating. Use a metal slotted spoon or chopsticks to move the peppers onto the bits of batter (watch the video it explains it so much better) and cook for 2 or 3 minutes turning once to cook on both sides.

Drain on kitchen paper and keep warm while you cook the rest.

To serve, pile up the peppers sprinkle with sea salt and shichimi pepper and pour some of the dipping sauce into a bowl.

 Buen Provecho!!

Things That Made Me Smile Today……..

I’ve been trying to get a shot of this for ages. There’s a pair of them in the spring where Rufus likes to cool down. They look like a cross between a dragonfly and a butterfly. The Washer Up got the shot in the end, he was more patient then me and willing to balance on a rock in the stream while trying not to fall in.

He also spotted this one through a gap in a fence….

I love that you can see it’s cute little face…

Have a great weekend…

15 Responses to “Tempura Green Peppers with Dipping Sauce”

  1. Colline September 2, 2011 at 7:07 pm #

    Mmmm, the peppers look good! And what beauties those butterflies are – capturing them on film is a positive way in which to close the summer.

  2. chicaandaluza September 2, 2011 at 8:15 pm #

    I´m sorry you´ve been so poorly – do hope you are proprly on the mend. It´s funny, I have a postto do on pimientos de padron soon! Don´t know why I don´t fry my peppers in tempura like other veggies – these look very special. As usual, stunning photos. Take care of yourself, don´t rush to do too much!

  3. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide September 2, 2011 at 10:42 pm #

    Glad you’re feeling better. I love this fusion recipe, very cool. And I do need to check out her site. Say his to Rufus for me!

  4. peasepudding September 2, 2011 at 10:44 pm #

    What a good idea for peppers, I don’t think I have ever attempted tempura. Think I might try it in the summer with a wok on the BBQ so I don’t have to worry about the mess.

  5. Caroline September 3, 2011 at 12:16 am #

    So sorry to hear that you were sick, but I’m glad you’re feeling better. Isn’t that the worst when eating doesn’t even sound appealing? These peppers look fantastic though! I must try them out.

  6. Ayako Mathies September 3, 2011 at 3:15 am #

    These look great. It’s interesting to note tempura is originally a Portuguese dish introduced to Japan in the 16th century.

    • foodblogandthedog September 3, 2011 at 1:34 pm #

      Wow that’s really interesting, I guess they’ve gone full circle then😀 I knew that the Portuguese introduced the chilli to India, looks like they were responsible for lots more culinary firsts too!!

  7. tony ward September 3, 2011 at 9:30 am #

    Now these look very tempting and something even I could manage. Glad you’re feeling better princess. I find a glass of Kir Royale takes your mind off it !!
    Buen fin de semana . xx

  8. Andrew Sloan September 3, 2011 at 1:46 pm #

    Looks very tasty but I would have liked to hear the “washer-ups” reaction if you hadn’t tidied up!

  9. Bexx September 3, 2011 at 6:11 pm #

    I love your pictures. The peppers look & sound wonderful.
    Glad you’re better. I hate being sick.

  10. Nami | Just One Cookbook September 3, 2011 at 6:13 pm #

    I’m so sorry that you were sick, but glad to hear you are getting better or already recovered. When I get sick nowadays it takes a longer time to heal…😦 Your tempura looks beautiful, I mean it’s really hard to make it crispy like this and you nailed it!!! And when we make shishito (Japanese green peppers), it always looks like this. Perfect tempura!! I shared it on my facebook fan page.

  11. Susan September 3, 2011 at 6:45 pm #

    I’m glad you’re back to normal! It’s horrible feeling ill, yes? As for your peppers, I love tempura. It’s funny and a bit related, but I just bought two beautiful poblano peppers to make chiles rellenos. Much like a tempura treatment, but with the added bit of cheese stuffing.

    Your butterfly photos are beautiful! I just found swallowtail caterpillars on my parsley and captured a few to watch the metamorphosis … three have come gone intoo pupa state and come out to be released. So beautiful and amzing to watch!

    Continue to feel better!

  12. lovefoodpinny September 4, 2011 at 10:45 pm #

    Simply delicious!

  13. luvnspoonfuls September 8, 2011 at 2:20 am #

    Looks so tasty…you can see how crunchy they are…I want some! I’d settle for the little bits left in the sauce even 😉 I’ve bookmarked this so I can try the tempura…you’ve given me courage to give it a go!

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