I get excited each spring when asparagus show up in the market. It is a sure sign spring is here and asparagus are best eaten this time of year. You can get Peruvian asparagus all year round but it doesn’t have the same bright, clean earthy flavor. Now is the time to embrace the spring and eat, eat, eat asparagus.
When buying asparagus choose smooth glossy spears with tightly closed tips. The bottom ends should look freshly cut. Eat your asparagus right away, the fresher the better. If you have to store them, stand the spears upright in an inch of water in the refrigerator.
Skinny asparagus are best sautéed. The thicker ones are best steamed, roasted or grilled. If you make a sauté like the recipe below and your asparagus are a little thick, cut off 2″ of the tip and slice the rest in half lengthwise. If the stalks are really thick peel them to get a silkier texture.
This week I am doing my Nourishing Foods Spring Cleanse. I wanted something spicy. I find spicy foods stimulate my tastebuds and satisfy me.
In this recipe I use garlic and ginger to create an Asian taste along with a bit of 5 spice. A little coconut sugar balances the flavors. Five spice powder can be purchased in most natural markets. It is a combination of Sichuan pepper, fennel, cloves, star anise and cinnamon. The sesame seeds give it a little crunch. I add a Serrano pepper for heat, but if you don’t like hot spicy leave it out. It will still be great.
Enjoy the recipe.
- 1 ¼ pounds asparagus (thin to medium is best)
- 1 ½ tablespoons coconut oil
- ¼ teaspoon Celtic sea salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon five spice powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons ginger, grated
- 1 tablespoon coconut sugar
- 1 serrano or birds-eye chile, thinly sliced (optional)
- 2 teaspoons wheat free tamari
- 1 ½ teaspoons toasted sesame seeds
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- 1 scallions thinly sliced
- ¼ cup cilantro leaves
- Snap off the bottoms of the asparagus then cut into 2” pieces. If your asparagus are thicker, cut off the top 2” and halve the rest lengthwise before cutting into 2” pieces.
- Heat a sauté pan over high heat. Add coconut oil. When the oil is hot add asparagus and season with salt
- Stir fry for one minute, add the black pepper, five-spice powder, garlic ginger, sugar, chiles (if using), tamari and sesame seeds
- Continue cooking over high heat, while stirring, until the asparagus are cooked but still firm and bright green, 2-3 minutes.
- Stir in the toasted sesame oil and scallions
- Serve topped with cilantro leaves