Beer-battered mushrooms with curry salt

Adam Liaw
Beer-battered mushrooms with curry salt.
Beer-battered mushrooms with curry salt. Photo: William Meppem
Difficulty
Easy
Dietary
Vegetarian

Asian mushrooms work best here, as they take very little time to cook and shouldn't absorb too much oil. Button or swiss brown mushrooms are fine too, but will take a bit more time to fry and be slightly more oily.

Ingredients

1½ cups self-raising flour

1 bottle (375ml) ice-cold beer

600g mixed fresh Asian mushrooms (such as shiitake, shimeji, hen-of-the-woods, enoki or eringi), or a mixture of button and swiss brown mushrooms

2 litres vegetable oil, for deep-frying

Curry salt (makes extra)

2 tsp salt

¼ tsp curry powder

Method

For the beer batter, mix the flour and beer together and whisk lightly to combine. Don't over-mix the batter. Retaining a few lumps is fine.

Cut any large mushrooms, such as eringi (king oyster), into smaller pieces, and separate any joined mushrooms like shimeji, hen-of-the-woods or enoki into smaller clumps. Trim the stems from the shiitake. For the curry salt, use a mortar and pestle to grind the salt and curry powder to a fine powder.

Heat the oil in a large saucepan to 170°C. Using chopsticks, dip each piece or clump of mushroom into the batter, and fry for about 3 minutes until golden brown. Drain on a wire rack and serve with a small pile of the curry salt for dipping.

Adam's tip: The curry salt is great with tempura, but also works really well with fried or roast chicken. With tempura I use a Western-style curry powder such as Keen's, and for chicken I prefer a Malaysian-style curry powder like Baba's.