I’ve been wondering all day why there were so many photos of dishes with asparagus at Food Gawker until I read that asparagus and spring go together. I never really associated vegetables with seasons. We get most vegetables, including asparagus, in this part of the world all year ’round except that they’re more expensive during the rainy season. Fruits, of course, are an altogether different issue because they come and go with the seasons.
Anyway, lunch today was this tofu and asparagus stir fry. It was just a supplement, really, because we had leftover pasta from last night. I cooked two pizzas (margherita) and a pot of Italian sausage pasta last night (yes, I will be posting the recipes for both in a short while) and, obviously, I overestimated my household’s eating capacity. Both pizzas were gone before everyone went to bed but there was some pasta left that I wasn’t sure would be enough for lunch.
Is this dish complicated? Of course not! This is a dish with only eight ingredients — nine if you count the cooking oil. Preparation time is ten minutes; cooking time is under 10 minutes.
- 1 cake of firm tofu (about 300 grams)
- 250 g. of baby asparagus
- 4 cloves (segments) of garlic, minced
- 1 onion, sliced
- 1 tbsp. of oyster sauce (for strict vegetarians, there are vegetarian oyster sauces)
- 1 tbsp. of hoisin sauce
- freshly ground pepper
- a drizzle of sesame seed oil
- 2 c. of cooking oil for deep frying
- Heat the cooking oil in a wok or frying pan.
- Cut the tofu into two-inch squares (smaller, if you like). Cut the asparagus into thirds. Crush, peel and finely mince the garlic. Peel, halve and finely slice the onion.
- When the oil is hot, deep fry the tofu cubes (see tips on frying tofu) until golden brown about five minutes. Scoop out of the oil with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
- Pour off the oil until only about a tablespoonful remains. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for about 30 seconds. Add the asparagus and stir fry for another 30 seconds. Add the cooked tofu, pour in the hoisin and oyster sauces, season with pepper (and some salt, if you like), and toss just until the sauces are evenly distributed. Drizzle with sesame seed oil, toss a few times and serve at once.