Tempura-battered seafood is tough to beat, as is a good oyster. This recipe combines these two beauties in a Japanese-inspired slider. If you can’t get your hands on oysters, mussels are a good substitute.
½ cup mayonnaise
2½ teaspoons wasabi (to taste)
2 large radishes, cut into thin strips
½ savoy cabbage, finely sliced
2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons sesame seeds
2 cups canola oil
3 dozen oysters
1 cup cornflour
1 cup plain flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
200ml ice-cold ginger beer
8 slider buns or hotdog rolls
The tempura batter needs to be made at the last minute and kept really cold. This will make it light and fluffy rather than solid and doughy. I’ve used ginger beer instead of the traditional soda water in the batter, as it provides a gentle sweetness to counteract the richness of the oyster.
Wasabi Mayo: Whisk the mayo and wasabi together. Pop in the fridge till required.
Slaw: Toss the radishes and cabbage in a bowl with the sesame oil and soy sauce. Toast the sesame seeds in a dry frying pan over medium heat until golden and fragrant. Toss through the salad. Check the seasoning and put in the fridge till required.
Tempura Oysters: Heat the canola oil in a wok or deep-fryer to 170°C or just before smoking point. Shuck the oysters and pat them dry with paper towels – this will help the batter to stick.
Combine the flours and baking powder in a large bowl, stirring well. Just before cooking the oysters, add the ginger beer and stir well. The mixture should be thick enough to coat your finger. Dredge 5–6 oysters at a time in the batter and then place in the hot oil and fry till golden brown (about 3 minutes). Remove the oysters from the hot oil and drain on paper towels. Repeat with the remaining oysters.
Cut the buns and smother each side with wasabi mayo. Add 3–4 oysters per bun and top with Japanese slaw. Serve immediately.