Asparagus Tempura with Orange Dipping Sauce

For this appetizer, use the thickest, sturdiest asparagus you can find so that they hold their texture and shape when fried in hot oil. For a light meal, you could also pile the crispy veggies atop a tossed salad and use the dipping sauce as dressing.

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  • 3 Tbs. fresh orange juice
  • 1 Tbs. grated orange zest
  • 1 Tbs. reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 Tbs. seasoned rice vinegar
  • 1 Tbs. sweet chili sauce
  • 1 tsp. grated fresh ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. toasted sesame oil
  • 1 Tbs. chopped cilantro


  • 5 cups peanut oil or vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups brown rice flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 8–12 oz. lager beer, such as Sapporo
  • 12 thick asparagus spears, bottom 2 inches trimmed off
  • 1 large red onion, cut into rings (about 12 large and small rings)


  1. To make Sauce: Whisk together all ingredients in small bowl. Set aside.
  2. To make Tempura: Heat oil in large saucepan or Dutch oven to 365°F.
  3. Whisk together rice flour and salt in large bowl. Add beer, and whisk to form smooth batter.
  4. Working in several small batches, dip asparagus and onion rings into batter to coat, then use tongs to lower vegetables into oil. Deep-fry vegetables 2 minutes, or until golden brown. Using tongs, transfer vegetables to paper towels to drain.
  5. Divide Tempura among 4 plates. Sprinkle with cilantro. Serve with Sauce.

Nutrition Information

  • Serving Size 3 aparagus spears and 3 onion rings
  • Calories 375
  • Carbohydrate Content 59 g
  • Cholesterol Content 0 mg
  • Fat Content 13 g
  • Fiber Content 5 g
  • Protein Content 7 g
  • Saturated Fat Content 2 g
  • Sodium Content 542 mg
  • Sugar Content 7 g

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