Tempura is a Japanese dish of seafood or vegetables that have been battered and deep fried. Lacy and crispy fried sweet potato tempura is a warm contrast to this cool salad. Tempura is best eaten right after frying. If done in advance, keep warm, uncovered in a low oven.
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- 1 large sweet potato or yam, peeled
- Canola or vegetable oil for frying
- 1 cup ice water
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 cup all-purpose or cake flour
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3-4 scallions, thinly sliced
- Soy-Braised Shiitake Mushrooms 16 oz.
- Asian greens (like Mizuna) or baby arugula
Soy Braised Shitake Mushrooms
- 5 ounces sliced shiitake mushrooms
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons mirin
- 1 1⁄2 tablespoons water
Sesame Miso Dressing
- 2 tablespoons red miso
- Juice of 1 lime (about 2 table spoons)
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon water
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon sriracha or chili paste
- 1⁄2 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1 1⁄4 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
- 5 tablespoons peanut oil
- Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1. Slice sweet potato in thin slices, about 1/8-1/4”thick – an Asian slicer or mandoline makes short work of this. Set aside.
2. Pour enough oil into a large pot to cover the bottom by 2 inches. Place over medium heat until temperature reaches 350 degrees on a fry thermometer.
3. While oil heats, mix ice water and egg yolk together in a bowl until blended. Using a fork or chopsticks, mix in flour until just combined. Mixture should be a bit lumpy – do not overmix.
4. Working in batches, dredge each sweet potato slice in batter and drop into hot oil (do not overcrowd in pot). Fry for 2-3 minutes on each side until crust looks golden and puffs slightly. Using a slotted spoon or spider, transfer to paper towel-lined plates to drain. Repeat with remaining batches of sweet potato slices. Sprinkle sweet potato tempura with sea salt and pepper.
5. Prepare the mushrooms by placing all ingredients in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then cover and reduce heat to low. Cook for 10-15 minutes or until mushrooms are tender and have reduced.
6. Assemble salad immediately prior to serving: Toss greens and a few tablespoons of Sesame-Miso Dressing (recipe below) in a large mixing bowl until leaves are coated with dressing. Divide greens among serving plates. Place 3-4 sweet potato tempura in center of greens. Surround with some mushrooms and a sprinkling of scallions. Drizzle a little dressing over tempura and serve immediately.
Combine all ingredients except peanut oil in a mixing bowl. Whisk until well blended. Add peanut oil in slow stream while whisking constantly until oil is incorporated. Season to taste with salt or pepper.
Recipe originally published in Joy of Kosher with Jamie Geller Magazine Fall 2014 Subscribe Now