Tender asparagus is a welcome sign of spring, and Thai seasonings — including lemongrass if you can find some — provide a wonderful way to enjoy them. Peel the lower part of the stalks before slicing if the skin is thick and tough. Photos by Evan Atlas.
- 1 tablespoon peanut oil or other vegetable oil
- 4 large scallions, sliced thin
- 2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh lemongrass
- Minced or ground dried red chiles to taste
- 1 pound asparagus, sliced on a diagonal, stalks and tips kept separate
- 3 to 4 tablespoons vegetable stock or water
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
- 1 tablespoon shoyu or natural soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh mint
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- Salt to taste
Set a wok or stir-fry pan over high heat. Add the oil and swirl it to coat the inside of the pan. Add the scallions and stir-fry briefly. Add the ginger, lemongrass, and chiles and continue stir-frying, gradually adding the asparagus, sliced stalks first.
Add stock, a tablespoon at a time, and stir-fry until the asparagus is tender but still bright green. Add the lime juice, shoyu, mint, and fresh cilantro. Toss well. Taste and add salt if needed. Serve immediately.