Recipe: Curly prawn tempura with sweet chilli dip

Creating a temperature difference between batter and oil is what makes a really good, crispy tempura.

Madiha Hamid July 31, 2013
Creating a temperature difference between batter and oil is what makes a really good, crispy tempura.

There are two tricks to getting the best tempuras: one is to prepare a very light batter and the second is to fry at the proper temperature. Creating a temperature difference between the batter and the oil is what makes a really good, crispy tempura, which is not too greasy.


For the batter:

Prawns 10 with just the tail intact

1 cup oil for frying

1 egg (lightly beaten)

½ tsp salt and black pepper as seasoning

¼ cup flour to sprinkle on prawns

¼ tsp baking soda

1 cup iced water

For the dip:

½ cup vinegar

½ cup sugar

½ tbsp crushed chillies

1 tbsp cornflour, dissolved in water

2 cloves garlic (mashed)

¼ cup water

3 tbsp fish sauce


Batter Preparation

•  Sift flour and soda in a bowl.

•  Add egg and mix lightly with flour.

•  Slowly add iced water and mix. Don’t make the batter into a smooth paste. Add more water if the batter is thick; it should be runny.

•  You can also add ice cubes to the batter to lower the temperature or place the batter over a bowl of ice to ensure that the temperature doesn’t rise.

Frying Tempuras

•  Add oil in a pan and heat it to a medium-high temperature.

•  Lightly sprinkle some flour over all the prawns.

•  Take one prawn by its tail and dip it into the batter. Coat it well.

•  Now place the batter coated prawns in the hot oil.

•  Fry till both sides turn golden brown.

•  Spoon them out on a paper towel.

Sweet Chilli Dip

I used to buy bottles of sweet chili sauce to serve with different snacks but this easy recipe makes a great dip.

•  Add the ingredients except cornflour in a pan.

•  Place the pan on medium heat and let it boil till the liquid reduces to almost half.

•  Beware of an extremely pungent smell of vinegar and chilies.

•  Once the liquid is reduced, add corn flour while mixing and thicken it to a dip consistency.

•  Let it cool in the refrigerator and serve it with prawn tempura.

Madiha Hamid is a digital media professional. She runs a food blog for Pakistani and regional cuisines called
Follow her on Twitter @cheflingtales

Published in The Express Tribune, Ms T, July 28th, 2013.

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