Sauteed Sweet and Spicy Szechuan Asaparagus

Sauteed Sweet and Spicy Szechuan Asparagus

I don’t post a ton of sides on the blog, but I love finding different ways to serve veggies or potatoes.  I actually found this recipe on Pinterest, but it linked back to a spammy type blog that just copied someone else’s pictures and content.  I recognized the picture though and after reading I knew this ORIGINAL REAL post was from One Perfect Bite.  I get so mad when people do that on Pinterest so I always flag these posts as SPAM.  If you ever see someone do this please flag it.  There is a little flag on the bottom right hand side for this.

Mary thought the sauce was a bit too strong for asparagus and more suited to green beans.  I would love it on green beans, but it also made me think to cut back on the soy sauce and add a little chicken broth to the sauce to tone it down a bit.  I will post the recipe as written, but just remember if you don’t want a heavy sauce then just replace a little of the soy sauce with broth.  That seemed to do the trick.  I absolutely loved the sweet and spice in this recipe and can’t wait to try it on green beans next.  This would be great over some noodles, too if you wanted to double the sauce.

Enjoy!

Sauteed Sweet and Spicy Szechuan Asparagus
 
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds of asparagus, ends discarded
  • ¼ cup soy sauce, low sodium (can replace some of this with chicken broth if you don’t want a real strong sauce)
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup white sugar
  • ¼ to 1 teaspoon red chili flakes
  • ½ teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch optional (to help thicken the sauce)
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted

Instructions
  1. Cut asparagus spears on the diagonal into 3 inch pieces
  2. Whisk together the soy sauce through optional cornstarch in a small bowl
  3. In a large sauce pan over medium high heat cook the asparagus in the water until the asparagus is crisp tender. Pour off the water and add the oil, garlic and ginger. Saute until lightly browned.
  4. Add the sauce and cook until it thickens and coats the asparagus.
  5. Add the sesame seeds and serve.

 

 

Chili Lime Baked Sweet Potato Fries

Chili Lime Sweet Potato Fries

Happy New Year! I am slow getting back from the holidays because I have been sick since the day after Christmas. I am one of those people that had flu-like symptoms, but I didn’t actually have the flu. I had ear infections, sinus infections, stomach bug, cough, cold, fever chills, headache – good times.  I feel much better now except one ear is still clogged up which is incredibly annoying.  I will take this over some of the other symptoms I had.

I did manage to get back to the gym yesterday and today – yippee.  I wasn’t really up for a whole lot, but I managed to do 40 and 30 minutes on the elliptical which is more than I thought I would do.  I honestly didn’t feel like going back but I told myself I could take it easy and once I got going it wasn’t too bad.  That is a good tactic by the way.  Whenever I don’t feel like going to the gym I tell myself I can take it easy that night.  That makes it easier to get there and then I usually find that I have lots more energy once I get there after about 10-15 minutes.  The key is getting there even when you don’t feel like it.  I can tell my body is still a little bit sick (or recovering), because I am not usually a sweaty person, but I sweat my butt off both days.  Hopefully I am flushing all of the junk out of my system!

I’m  also on the bandwagon of trying to eat as much healthy food as possible after Christmas.  My goal is to pack as many fruits and veggies (and other super-type foods) into my diet as possible.  Portion control is my second food related strategy.  I figure those two tactics along with getting to the gym four days a week will help me shed a few extra pounds this month.

My sister-in-law actually made sweet potato fries over the holidays and I couldn’t wait to get home to recreate my own version. I have to say, making a baked version at home almost tastes better than the fried sweet potatoes I have tried in restaurants. I feel like baking them retains some of the sweetness of the fries that frying might destroy? I also don’t like to overcook them.  Anyways – these were really good and if you have never made sweet potato fries at home you should definitely try these. Food like this makes it easy to eat healthy!

We used organic sweet potatoes and it might just be me, but I have found that organic sweet potatoes taste sooo much better than non-organic.  They seem to be a brighter color and they are a lot sweeter (which makes for a great fry.)   We got these from Trader Joe’s, but I have had them from Whole Foods and Fresh Market and they are sooooo good.

Enjoy!

Chili Lime Sweet Potato Fries
 
Ingredients
  • 2 organic sweet potatoes
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil (enough to coat)
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Peel sweet potatoes and slice into fries. Place on a sheet pan and gently toss with the olive oil, chili powder and lime juice. Spread fries out on pan in an even layer.
  3. Bake for 25-30 minutes until crispy stirring once or twice. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Enjoy!

 

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