Prep 1 hr
Cook 10 mins
Alex Guarnaschelli's Old School Comfort Food
- 3 tablespoons sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons reduced sodium soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon honey
- kosher salt
- 1 lb fairly thin pencil asparagus, ends trimmed, cut into 2-inch pieces
- 4 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil.
- Make the dressing: In a small pan, heat the honey over medium heat until it froths and turns golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat and carefully pour the vinegar over it. Return to heat and simmer to reduce for a minute. In a bowl, whisk together the sesame oil, soy sauce, and red pepper flakes. Season with a pinch of salt. Whisk in the honey mixture.
- Prepare an ice bath: Fill a large bowl halfway with ice cubes and add some cold water. Place a colander squarely inside the ice bath. The colander will keep you from having to pick the asparagus out from amongst the ice cubes in the ice bath.
- Add salt until the boiling water tastes like seawater. Add the asparagus to the boiling water and cook for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes - you want them to be crunchy. If the asparagus are thin, cook for only 1 minute. Remove the asparagus from the water with a strainer and transfer them to the colander inside the ice bath. Allow them to cool completely for a few minutes and then place them on a kitchen towel to drain any excess moisture.
- Toss the asparagus, sesame seeds, and the sauce together and refrigerate for 1 hour, or until ready to serve.