Yield: 8 servings
Cook's notes: To toast sesame seeds, place in small skillet on medium-high heat. Shake handle of skillet to redistribute seeds as they lightly brown. Transfer to plate.
Procedure: 1. Cut asparagus into 3-inch pieces on the diagonal. In a small bowl whisk together soy sauce, rice vinegar, sugar, chili flakes and pepper. Set aside.
2. Heat a large sauté pan over high heat. Add 1/2 cup water and asparagus. Cover and cook until asparagus is still crisp to the bite, about 2 to 3 minutes. Uncover and pour off any remaining water. Add oil, garlic and ginger to the pan with asparagus. Sauté until garlic softens, about 30 to 40 seconds. Add soy sauce mixture. Bring to a boil. Cook until the sauce coats the asparagus (be careful not to overcook it, it should be tender-crisp). Transfer to a serving platter. Sprinkle in toasted sesame seeds. Serve immediately.
Nutrition information (per serving): 227 calories, 36 percent of calories from fat, 9 g fat, 2.5 g saturated fat, 20 mg cholesterol, 30 g carbohydrates, 5 g protein, 1,250 mg sodium, 3.5 g fiber Source: Adapted from the California Asparagus Commission
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