Estimated reading time: 4 minutes
Asparagus with Gochujang is a super easy, spicy way to cook your asparagus. The asparagus and Korean red chilli paste (gochujang) take centrestage, with some help from bit players like sesame oil and garlic.
It’s easy, it’s quick and there isn’t a whole lot to say about it. So this is going to be a quick post. For a change, yes I heard that! I think about 10 minutes of prep time, then 5 minutes of cooking time, is all you need.
So let’s dive straight into the ingredients.
What is Gochujang (Korean Red Chilli Paste)?
Gochujang is an essential ingredient in Korean cooking. It is a fermented paste, made with red chillies, ground rice, ground soy beans and a few other ingredients. Unlike the Chinese Doubanjiang and other bean pastes, gochujang is smooth, and while spicy, has a sweet touch about it.
The sweetness is often in the form of some sort of syrup added to it during production. I think it’s time I added gochujang to my recently dormant Ingredients page!
Substitute for Gochujang
Make a miso based chilli paste. Start with any chilli paste that has as little ingredients added as possible. Then add dark miso paste to it for the fermented flavour, and a tiny, tiny amount of corn syrup or honey. Or even sugar.
For this Asparagus with Gochujang recipe
You can substitute any chilli paste or sauce you have, if you haven’t got miso sitting around at home. In the interest of making spicy fried asparagus!
How to cook asparagus
You can blanch it, grill it or fry it. Personally, I find blanched asparagus a little insipid, preferring the charred flavour you get from grilling or frying it.
When buying asparagus, always look for the bright green ones. No brown or straggly looking bits, and certainly no split ends. Leave that for your hair!
All you need to do to prepare asparagus, is to rinse it, then holding each stalk in your hands, towards the thicker end, just bend the asparagus. It will naturally break at the point where woody meets fleshy. Yes, there’s a gutter joke in there somewhere!
This is, as mentioned, a super quick recipe. So get everything ready, then start cooking. You’ll notice that I add the garlic after the asparagus. That’s because, if done the other way around, the garlic always burns and is bitter.
Did I mention quick and easy?
Let’s get our aprons on!
If you like the recipe, don’t forget to leave me a comment and that all important, 5-star rating! Thank you!
And if you make the recipe, share it on any platform and tag me @azlinbloor, and hashtag it #linsfood
More Vegetarian Recipes on LinsFood
Asparagus with Gochujang (Korean Red Chilli Paste)
- 500 g asparagus
- 1 Tbsp sesame oil
- 2 Tbsp gochujang 1 for less spicy
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 clove garlic finely chopped
- 4 Tbsp water
- 1 tsp rice vinegar or any clear vinegar
- sesame seeds
- 1 spring onion scallion, chopped
- Clean the asparagus. Then break off the woody end. Just grab your asparagus at the end with one hand, and halfway up with the other. Then bend. It will break naturally, at the spot between the woody end and where the tender part starts. Leave the asparagus whole.
- Mix all the ingredients for the gochujang sauce and set aside.
- Heat half the sesame oil on medium-high heat and fry the asparagus for 2 minutes, flipping (or stirring) frequently, to get a lightly charred look. Add the garlic, fry for 15 seconds.
- Reduce the heat to medium and pour in the gochujang sauce. Be careful, it may splutter. Stir, and leave to cook for 1-2 more minutes, depending how well done you like your asparagus.
- Turn the heat off and stir in the vinegar.
- Tip out onto a serving plate. Drizzle the rest of the sesame oil all over, scatter with the spring onions (scallions) and serve immediately.