For Ultra Crispy Fried Ice Cream, Try The Japanese Tempura Method

Fried ice cream is a paradoxical delight, marrying cold, creamy sweetness with a hot, crispy shell. But just when you thought this dessert couldn't get any better, in comes a twist from a classic Japanese ingredient: tempura batter. The light and airy nature of tempura is just the thing to elevate ordinary fried ice cream to an especially crunchy treat. But to make the most of the textural sensation, you need to understand why and how tempura can transform this dessert.

Tempura is one of the most well-known Japanese dishes: The batter is usually used to coat vegetables or seafood. It's known for its distinct ability to be both feather-light and deliciously crunchy. The secret lies in its unique batter composition and the way in which it fries up. For the best results, it's important that your tempura batter isn't too thick or thin. Aim for the consistency of pancake batter. Using very cold tempura batter is essential as well. This ensures a fast fry and a crispy shell.

Tips for extra crispy fried ice cream

Before you even think about frying, scoop out your desired ice cream balls and freeze them solid. This ensures that when they're introduced to the hot oil, the ice cream doesn't immediately melt away. It's also helpful to wrap the frozen ice cream balls in a thin layer of cake or even bread and then place them back in the freezer. This layer acts as insulation and provides a better surface for the tempura to adhere to.

Prepare your tempura batter according to the recipe. The trick to perfect tempura lies in using icy cold water and not overmixing. The batter should be somewhat lumpy. Take your cake-wrapped ice cream and dip it right into the tempura batter, ensuring a thick and even coating. Have your heated oil in a deep fryer or large pan ready — the ice cream balls only need a quick fry of 10-15 seconds, until they are golden brown. Once the ice cream is fried, place it on a plate lined with paper towels to absorb any excess oil. Serve up the tempura-fried ice cream immediately to experience the warm crunch of the batter and the cold, melting ice cream.

So, the next time you're craving a dessert that's both sweet and crispy, treat yourself to a tempura-fried ice cream adventure.