Everything tastes better when it's deep-fried. And that's the blessing that tempura brings to the table. Taking the lightest, fluffiest and crispiest batter imaginable and wrapping it around traditional Japanese delights, these moreish little morsels add an edge to every sushi spread.
Balancing out delicate sashimi and hearty uramaki, tempura shakes up your palate with a texture sensation. Filled with love, these little beauties show seafood and vegetables off in their best light. And they do just that over at Fu Asian, Taki and Hasekura.
Tempura is a dish with one key ingredient – or a mixture of a few – that has been heightened with a light deep-fried coating. Simple but super effective, there's nothing quite like it. But we're okay with that, because tempura is special.
Taking anything from seafood to vegetables, it's coated in extra-cold batter to give it a crisper finish – and after being dropped in hotter than hot oil for what seems like a split second, this specialty is done. You'll either find it served up with a dipping sauce, or topping off noodle broths or soups.
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Although they're authentically Japanese in nature, the treats we know as tempura also have a Portuguese influence. Traditionally, tempura was fried without the batter. But in the late 16th century, the idea of using a flour based batter to coat goodies was absorbed from Portuguese missionaries in Nagasaki.
Back then, the original batter was thick and heavy, with the resulting deep-fried wonders served up solo. Fast forwarding a few years, the start of the 17th century saw street food vendors invent a lighter batter made of just sparkling water and flour. Offered up on skewers and with a grated daikon sauce, tempura quickly became a favourite and started showing up in proper dining establishments too.
The beauty of tempura might seem like it's on the outside, but all the action happens underneath that crispy coating. With a wealth of possible deep-fried delights at your fingertips, how could you possibly choose just one?
At Taki they get this, so they offer up all sorts of curated boxes. Go for the Crunchy box to get a taste of crispy king prawn tempura and surimi. We love their California Special box, where you'll find crunchy fujirolls bundled up with all your usual sushi suspects. And if you prefer your tempura in a served up noodle-style in a broth, head to Fu Asian for ramen topped with crisp bites.
Over at Hasekura, they offer up the best of both worlds. Get your tantalising tempura served up in rice bowl, or let them be the star of the show on their own. Find squid, anchovies and prawn, or opt for mixed vegetables.
Enjoy authentic Japanese dishes from the comfort of home. Let Deliveroo bring a selection of your favourite tempura to you.
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