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Essensia Restaurant + Lounge’s Tempura Avocado

From Executive Chef Venoy Rogers III

TEMPURA AVOCADO, Essensia Restaurant & Lounge

In Florida, the only thing we love more than avocados is coming up with fun, new ways to eat them. Luckily, we here in Miami have Executive Chef Venoy Rogers III—the mastermind behind Essensia Restaurant + Lounge {3025 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach; 305.908.5458} and our personal guru on all things delicious, good-for-you cuisine—to make sure that happens. Fusing his own “New American” twist into Essensia’s local, seasonal, farm-to-table menu, Chef Rogers came up with a fun way to enjoy this favorite South Florida fruit, with a little indulgence thrown in for good measure.

Want to try this dish for yourself? Head to Chef Rogers’ must-try restaurant, in The Palms Hotel & Spa, and order his Tempura Avocado. Then, when you love it, go home and use the recipe below to whip it up on your own.

Tempura Avocado from Executive Chef Venoy Rogers III of Essensia Restaurant + Lounge
serves four to six

The Ingredients

Tomato Chipotle Jam:
1 c Roma tomato, diced
1 medium red bell pepper, diced
3 tbsp sugar
1/2 c red wine vinegar
2 tsp Chipotle Purée
1/2 small red onion, 1/4 c diced
salt and pepper, to taste

Cilantro-Lime Crème Fraiche:
1 lime, juice and zest
1/2 c crème fraiche or sour cream
1 tbsp cilantro, chopped
salt and pepper, to taste

Tempura Batter:
2 egg whites
1 c All-Purpose Flour
2/3 c cold water

Tempura Avocado:
2 avocados
6 c oil, excluding olive oil
sea salt, to taste

The Method

For Tomato Chipotle Jam: Sauté onion in a large sauté pan for four to six minutes.  Add diced tomatoes and cook for an additional four to six minutes. Deglaze the pan with vinegar. Add all remaining ingredients, and allow everything to simmer on medium or low heat for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the liquid has reduced and the consistency resembles jam.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

For Cilantro-Lime Crème Fraiche: Combine all ingredients in a bowl and season with salt and pepper.

For Tempura Batter: Beat egg whites until frothy. Fold flour and cold water into the egg whites until the batter is barely mixed.

For Tempura Avocado: Remove the skin and pit from the avocado. Slice each avocado into six even wedges. Using a fork or a skewer, dip each avocado wedge into the tempura batter and shake off the excess batter. Fry each wedge in oil at 355 degrees for two minutes, or until golden brown. Remove the wedges from oil and season immediately.

To Serve: Drizzle Cilantro-Lime Crème Fraiche directly on the serving plate, and space battered avocado wedges evenly across. Fill the curve of each wedge, where the pit used to be, with a dollop of the Tomato Chipotle Jam and serve.

Enjoy!

By Jennifer Agress | Miami Editor