Tempura Brownies

By Robin Clark + Melissa Lee

Taiwan is a melting pot. We were ruled by the Japanese government for fifty years. The arrival of the Japanese in 1895 brought an array of ingredients ranging from seaweed and raw fish to tempura and miso. Most of our elders speak Japanese, and Japanese food is my comfort food. When I was little, tempura was a treat that I looked forward to indulging in every time my dad or grandma took me to a nice Japanese restaurant. I can never resist the crunchy feeling of a tempura shrimp in my mouth. Never! Now I am in my thirties, and those crunchy treats bring me back to my childhood. Every time I see a plate of tempura shrimp, my eyes light up with joy and excitement. 

 

Brownies were a novelty for me, but for Robin, they were a huge part of her childhood and spark happy memories. Just like tempura is my weakness, brownies are Robin’s weakness.  She also loves fried food. “If you fry it, I will eat it,” she said. So here we are, the tempura brownie—an Asian twist on an American confectionary classic. You can’t go wrong! 

Prep Time: 45 minutes total

Cook Time: 20–30 minutes for the first bake, 5 minutes to fry 

Feeds 6 People

List of the tools and special equipments

Cutlery
  • Chef’s knife
  • Chopping board
Bakeware
  • Dry and wet measuring cups
  • Measuring spoons
  • Mixing bowl
  • Loaf pan
  • Resting rack 

 

Hand tools/Gadgets
  • Whisk
  • Ice cream or cookie scoop
  • Slotted spoon
  • Rubber spatula
  • Spiderweb 

 

Cookware

Small saucepan

 

Appliances
  • KitchenAid Stand Mixer with whisk attachments
  • Fryer or a deep pot with canola oil

 

Ingredients

Brownies:

125 grams (4.5 ounces)  70% dark chocolate 

85 grams  (6 tablespoons) Butter

2 Eggs

150 grams (¾ cup) Sugar

40 grams (¼ cup) Flour

25 grams (3 tablespoons) Cocoa powder

½ tsp Salt

Tempura Batter:

1 ¾ cups All purpose flour

1 Egg

1 ½ cup Ice water

¼ cup Cocoa powder (optional) 

Directions

 

To make the brownies

 

  1. Melt the chocolate and butter in a small saucepan, whisk until glossy and smooth.
  2. Beat the eggs and sugar in a mixer with the whisk attachment until light and fluffy. The mixture should be pale yellow.
  3. Add in the melted chocolate mixture. Mix until combined.
  4. Combine the flour, cocoa powder, and salt in a bowl.
  5. Add the dry ingredients mixture to the mixer.
  6. Mix just until combined and a smooth batter is formed. 
  7. Spray a loaf pan liberally with non-stick spray.
  8. Add in the brownie batter.
  9. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20–30 minutes. (You want them to be slightly underbaked, so they are easier to scoop later.)
  10. Let the brownies cool completely then scoop brownie balls with a cookie scoop.

 

To make the tempura batter

 

  1. Preheat fryer to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Beat egg in a bowl until smooth.
  3. Add the ice water and whisk to combine. 
  4. Add the flour and cocoa and whisk lightly to combine. Do NOT overwork the batter.
  5. Working in batches, dip the brownie balls in the batter and then carefully place them in the oil. 
  6. Fry until crispy.

Storage Tips

Trust me, you’ll eat these all in one sitting. 

Chef’s Notes

Melissa recommends Valrhona Noir Guanja 70% dark chocolate for this recipe. It’s bittersweet and elegant! 

For a less chocolatey dish you can use just flour in the tempura batter. 

These go great with vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, or even powdered sugar. If you want to add another playful component to this dessert, please try our soy caramel! They are BFFs just like Robin and Melissa! 

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Here are the Amazon affiliate links for you to order the ingredients and tools to create this delicious dish.

Cutlery

Epicurean Gourmet Series Cutting Board, 17.5-Inch by 13-Inch, Natural/Slate

Miyabi 34313-213 Fusion Morimoto Edition Chef’s Knife, 8-inch, Black w/Red Accent/Stainless Steel

 

Electrics

KitchenAid KSM150PSER Artisan Tilt-Head Stand Mixer with Pouring Shield, 5-Quart, Empire Red

Breville BDF500XL Smart Fryer

 

Bakeware

OXO Good Grips Cookie Scoop 3-Pack

OXO Good Grips Measuring Cups and Spoons Set, Stainless Steel

OXO Good Grips 3-Piece Stainless-Steel Mixing Bowl Set

USA Pan 1140LF Bakeware Aluminized Steel Loaf Pan, 1 Pound, Silver

Chicago Metallic Professional Non-Stick Cooling Rack, 16.75-Inch-by-11.75-Inch

 

Cookware

Le Creuset LS2518-1617 Signature Enameled Cast Iron Saucepan, 1-3/4-Quart, Caribbean

 

Hand Tools/Gadgets

OXO Good Grips 9-Inch Whisk

Le Creuset JS410-17 Craft Series Medium Spatula, 11 1/8″ x 2 1/4″, Caribbean

Helen’s Asian Kitchen Stainless Steel Mesh Spider Food Dumpling Noodle Strainer, 7-Inch Strainer Basket

Etekcity Lasergrip 1080 Non-Contact Digital Laser Infrared Thermometer Temperature Gun -58℉~1022℉ (-50℃~550℃), Yellow and Black

by Etekcity

 

Food

Valrhona French Gourmet Chocolate Bars “Guanaja” Dark Chocolate 70% with Cocoa nibs, 2 Pack 2x3oz

Valrhona 100% Pure Cocoa Powder (8.8 ounce) (Pack of 2)

Domino Pure Cane Organic Sugar – 24 oz

 

 

 

 

 

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