Halloween is such a fun time of year for food. I always love seeing how creative people can get with food and party decorations. This year I saw I super cute recipe featured on FOODNETWORK.COM called the Tempura Octopus. Aren’t they adorable?
The moment I saw them, I knew I wanted to try and make them for Whistler. We have such a hard time getting that kid to eat a meal that I thought for sure these fun critters would make dinner time more fun and less of a fight. Turns out, I was right!
With permission from FOODNETWORK.COM, here is how to make Tempura Hot Dog Octopus.
*Note* I decided to make mine full sized. To make yours smaller like the photo above, just cut the hot dogs in half first, then create the legs. I also “cheated” and took a short cut by buying Tempura Batter in a box from the grocery store. Just add water and you’re ready to roll.
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 small red chile, such as a Thai bird chile, sliced and seeded
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 24 beef cocktail franks
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- 1/2 cup cornstarch
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup seltzer water
- 1 large egg
- Kosher salt
- 1/2 cup ice cubes
- Serving suggestion: sliced cucumbers
- Stir together the lemon juice, rice vinegar, soy sauce, sugar, chile, garlic and 1 tablespoon water in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Slice one cocktail frank almost all the way in half lengthwise, leaving the top quarter of the frank intact. Rotate 90 degrees and slice again so you have 4 strips attached to the unsliced top of the frank. Using a sharp paring knife, cut each of the 4 strips in half so you have 8 “tentacles.”
- Spread the tentacles and place upright on a microwave-safe plate. Repeat with the remaining cocktail franks, using 2 plates to lay out all the octopi.
- Microwave one plate at a time for about 30 seconds, or until the cocktail franks sizzle and the tentacles curl slightly. Let cool. The franks will keep the shape that they were microwaved in.
- Heat 1 1/2 inches of oil to 360 degrees F in a heavy-bottom pot or Dutch oven.
- Place the cornstarch in a shallow bowl. In a second bowl, whisk together the flour, seltzer, egg and 1/4 teaspoon salt until smooth. Add the ice cubes to keep the batter cold.
- Working in batches, dredge the octopi in the cornstarch, tapping off the excess, and then drag through the batter. Let the excess batter drip off so the tentacles stay defined.
- Carefully add to the hot oil, holding each octopus by one of the tentacles for the easiest dipping. Fry, turning, until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate to drain.
- Serve with the dipping sauce and sliced cucumbers
Information/recipe provided by FOODNETWORK.COM. All opinions remain my own.