• vegetable oil, for deep-frying
  • 75 g (3 oz) plain flour
  • 2 tablespoons cornflour
  • pinch of salt
  • 200 ml (7 fl oz) ice-cold sparkling water
  • 1 red pepper, cored, deseeded and cut into strips
  • 150 g (5 oz) thin asparagus spears, trimmed
  • 1 courgette, trimmed and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon rind
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Mix the dipping sauce ingredients together in a serving bowl and set aside.

Half-fill a deep saucepan with vegetable oil and heat to 180–190°C (350–375°F), or until a cube of bread dropped into the oil browns in 30 seconds. Just before the oil is hot enough, using a hand whisk, quickly beat the flour, cornflour, salt and sparkling water together in a bowl to make a slightly lumpy batter.

Dip one-third of the vegetables into the batter until coated and then drop straight into the hot oil. Fry for 2 minutes until crisp. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon, drain on kitchen paper and keep warm in a low oven.

Fry the remaining vegetables in 2 more batches. Serve hot with the dipping sauce.

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