- 100g plain flour
- 1 egg
- 180ml ice cold lager or sparkling water
- Herbs, such as rosemary, thyme, mint, sage, tarragon, dill, parsley, basil and chives
- Lemon wedges, for squeezing
- Hot chilli sauce or mayo, for dunking
Prep: 10 mins | Cook: 5-10 mins
1. Sift the flour into a mixing bowl and whisk in 180ml ice cold lager or sparkling water to make a batter with the consistency of double cream. Set aside in the fridge till you're ready to make the herb tempura – keeping the batter cold helps ensure you get a light and airy result when you fry it.
2. Prepare your herbs, ready for frying. For woody herbs, like rosemary and thyme, pinch the tender tips off the woody stalks. For mint, sage and tarragon, pinch the tender leaves off the woody stalks. For dill, parsley and basil, keep them on their stalks, as these are tender enough to eat. Leave chives whole, and if they have flowers then leave those on them.
3. Pour enough rapeseed or sunflower oil into a large pan to fill it one-third of the way up, or use a deep-fat fryer. Set the pan on a medium-high heat and bring to 180°C – a cube of bread dropped into the oil should brown within 30 secs.
4. Dip a few herb sprigs in the cold batter, and carefully drop into the hot oil. Fry for 2-3 mins, taking care not to over crowd the pan – cook the herb sprigs in small batches. Lift the golden brown herb tempura out with tongs and pop on a plate lined with kitchen paper. Repeat till you have fried all your herb sprigs.
5. Dust the herb with a little salt, and serve with lemon wedges for squeezing, and a chilli sauce for dipping.