When I made dessert tempura for the first time, I finally understood the magic of deep-fried foods. Up until then, fried chicken, fried pickles, and funnel cakes seemed to require a level of innate skill or knowledge that I did not posses. Well, once I successfully made a batch of shrimp and vegetable tempura, I was pretty excited about the possibilities.
I started thinking about all the weird foods Americans love to deep fry, like the fried Oreos at the local bar and the fried Mars Bars I’m always hearing about. When I told Jeremy I wanted to try doing a dessert tempura, he started thinking about frying up strawberries, apricots, and bananas. Then I knew we were onto something.
It doesn’t take more than a minute to whip up a batch of this fudgey chocolate fondue, either, and before I knew it, we had a beautiful, exciting dessert course. However, I don’t necessarily recommend eating all this food after a big teppanyaki dinner the way we did: it makes for a massive meal. That kind of dinner party should be left to the professionals. Or not!
I would totally make this for a girls’ night in, a slumber party (with people old enough to be trusted around hot oil), Mothers’ Day, Valentine’s Day, a birthday party, whatever you like!
Make sure each guest has access to the fondue pot with hot oil in which to cook all the dippers. Each guests should also have access to a portion of the batter as well as some of the chocolate fondue or chocolate sauce. Additionally, each guest should have access to either a rack which will be used to let the oil drain off the dippers while they cool, or should be provided with some paper towels on a plate to absorb the excess oil.
For example, we made dessert tempura at a table of four. We had one fondue pot with hot oil, two bowls of tempura batter (one for each couple), two small ceramic fondue pots with the chocolate fondue (one for each couple), four saucers covered with paper towels (one for each diner), and multiple plates for each kind of dipper. In this way, everyone could comfortably reach everything they needed to make their own little chocolate-covered tempura treats.
Dessert tempura batter recipe
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 cup ice water
- 1 cup plus 4 tablespoons cake flour (this is finer than all-purpose flour)
- 1/8 tablespoon baking soda
Mix ingredients together in a bowl using a pair of chopsticks. Do not mix until smooth; a few lumps will allow the batter to be airy and light, and it will stick to the food better.
Dessert Tempura Recipe
- 1 batch of tempura batter
- 3 cups peanut oil blend, or enough to cover the bottom of your fondue pot at least two inches
- 1 batch of fudgey chocolate fondue, easy chocolate fondue, or some chocolate syrup
- Powdered sugar
- Strawberries, halved
- Apricots, cut into chunks
- Peaches, cut into chunks
- Bite-size candy bars
- Oreo cookies
- Bananas, sliced (Only slice the bananas immediately before serving so they don’t get to brown or mushy. Also don’t use overripe bananas for this.)
Do you have any other suggestions for dessert tempura dippers? Let me know about it in the comments!
- Pour the oil into your electric fondue pot to a depth of at least two inches. Alternatively, if you’re using a metal fondue pot heated with an alcohol burner, you can preheat the oil in a pan on the stove.
- Set the table so that each guest has a dessert plate, 1-2 fondue forks, a plate with some paper towels to absorb the excess oil, and access to dippers, fondue batter, and chocolate sauce or fondue.
- Stab a dipper with your fondue fork, swirl it around in the batter, and put it in the hot oil. If the batter isn’t sticking to the dipper very well, you can cover it with powdered sugar first, then dip it in the batter.
- The softer fruits and the chocolate bars will cook much faster than the harder fruits and the Oreos. Just keep an eye on your tempura and when the batter looks golden and crispy, it’s time to take it out place it on your paper towel for a minute to let it absorb the extra oil.
- Top your treat with powdered sugar or chocolate sauce, or dip it in the chocolate fondue before eating. Careful–it’s hot and sweet!
- Repeat! Drink wine!