Cauliflower carpaccio in tempura batter with lime mayonnaise

Serves 4 as a starter




  • 1 large cauliflower, broken into large florets
  • 200ml sunflower oil, for deep frying
  • 4 spring onions, sliced thinly diagonally
  • 1 long red chilli, sliced into rings 50g cornflour
  • 80g rice flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 180ml ice cold soda water
  • squeeze of lemon juice


To make the mayo, mix the egg, lime juice and wasabi in a bowl and gradually whisk in the oils to form a thick emulsion. Add salt to taste.

Slice each floret with a sharp knife to about 5mm thickness to make carpaccio. Don’t waste the trimmings – steam them for another meal.

Line a tray with kitchen paper. Heat the oil to 160°C/325°F in a wok or use a deep fat fryer and briefly fry the onions and chilli to just wilt, not crisp. Lift them out with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Set aside.

Put the flours in a bowl with 1⁄2tsp salt and the baking powder. When ready to cook, put the egg yolk, soda water and lemon juice into a bowl and stir. Add to the flour bowl and mix until just lumpy. Use right away.

Dip 4 pieces of cauliflower carpaccio at a time into the tempura batter and fry until puffy and pale golden (for about 2 minutes each side) and drain on kitchen paper. If they are browning too quickly lower the temperature to between 140-155°C/275- 305°F. It’s important to fluctuate the temperature if using a wok (a deep fat fryer will do it for you) so the cauliflower cooks and the batter crisps without burning. Keep the fried pieces in a warm oven until the rest are done.

Mix the fried onions and chilli with 1⁄2tsp sea salt crystals and 1⁄4tsp freshly ground black pepper just before serving.

Serve the cauliflower tempura scattered with spring onion, chilli and sea salt crystal and pepper mixture, and with the lime mayonnaise.



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