Sam Choy's Kitchen recipe: Lobster Tempura Yield: 4 servings
Sweet cold water lobster tails make this lobster tempura dish special. The lobster tails that I like to use are Tristan lobster tails. Their shells are thin and the meat is exceptionally sweet. You can find these tails at The Seafood Connection.
Ingredients: 8 (3-4 ounce) Tristan lobster tails frozen Oil for deep frying
For the batter: ¾ cup all-purpose flour ½ cup cornstarch ½ tablespoon baking powder ¼ teaspoon salt 1 cup ice cold water (adjust water if thinner batter desired)
For the grapefruit soy sauce: 2 tablespoons soy sauce 1 tablespoon grapefruit juice
For the chili aioli sauce: 2 tablespoons mayonnaise ½ teaspoon sambal oelek
For the pineapple sweet chili sauce: 2 tablespoons sweet Thai chili sauce 1 tablespoon minced fresh pineapple
Preparation: Mix up all the dipping sauces. They are all very easy. All you need to do is measure the ingredients into three small bowls and mix. If you think your family or guests might want more sauce, you can double or triple the quantities.
Defrost the lobster tails in the refrigerator for best results.
Split the lobster tails in half lengthwise. Gently pull lobster meat from shell leaving the meat attached to the tail end of the shell.
Put all the dry ingredients (flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt) for the batter in a bowl and whisk them together. Gradually add the iced water, whisking the batter as you pour. Don't feel that you need to add all the water; if the batter looks fine to you, stop pouring. Try not to over-mix the batter. That would release the gluten in the flour and make the tempura coating tough and chewy.
Heat the oil in your deep-fryer or deep saucepot to 350 degrees (a frying thermometer would be a big help). Hold a lobster tail by the shell and dip the dangling tail meat into the batter and then into the hot oil. Fry the lobster until it is crisp, or about 1 ½ to 2 minutes. Drain on paper towels. Repeat until all the lobster tails are cooked. We like to leave the tails on as they turn red when cooked and make a great presentation.
Presentation: Serve the lobster with the three dipping sauces on the side.