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.
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
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.