And I had another recipe lined up from my YouTube sessions - Szechuan Green Beans. Watching the video made me think that the recipe would work just as well with asparagus. However, I forgot to get salad onions required for this recipe and I had no onion in the house, so I skipped it. It still turned out quite nice.
1 tbsp sesame seeds
1 tsp cornstarch
2 tbsp water
285 g thin green asparagus, trimmed and washed
1 tbsp grapeseed oil
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 tbsp chilli sauce
1 tsp white wine vinegar
1 tsp granulated sugar
3 tbsp soy sauce
chilli flakes (optional)
- Heat up a pan and briefly toast the sesame seeds, stirring constantly, until they start popping, then remove from the heat and transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- Stir the corn starch into the water and set aside.
- Then heat up the grapeseed oil and fry the asparagus until it caramelises here and there, about 15 minutes. Remove to a side dish.
- In the same pan, heat up the toasted sesame oil and add the ginger and garlic and fry for a minute or so, stirring vigorously.
- Add the chilli sauce, vinegar, sugar, soy sauce and chilli flakes and stir through, then give the dissolved cornstarch a quick stir and pour into the pan, then return the asparagus and stir to get it well coated.
- Serve warm.
Now the recipe was for a pound of green beans, i. e. about half a kilo. My asparagus was just over half of that and the result was quite a lot of sauce to go round, so next time I'll definitely aim for the half a kilo mark. It'll also probably make the asparagus look more attractive.
I was also suprised that the sauce first appeared to be so thick - of course the cornstarch did do this, but I expected it to be a bit runnier.
Finally, I wasn't quite sure what sort of chilli sauce to use - in the YouTube video it appeared to be the sweet chilli sauce, but that has no heat at all almost and I thought it can't be right as sugar is added as well. So I used the Korean chilli paste/thick sauce I bought for my dolsot bibimbap recipes. And I added some really hot chilli flakes just to be on the safe side.
Overall I'm very pleased with the result and Lundulph and I gobbled them up pretty quickly. However, for the remaining asparagus, we'll go back to boiling them, as it's possibly a bit healthier...