Simple Soy-Sesame Asparagus

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It’s asparagus season and this recipe is my go-to when I don’t feel like cooking a complicated side dish. With only five ingredients, this asparagus comes together in less than ten minutes and tastes greater than the sum of its parts.

Ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 pounds asparagus, trimmed and cut crosswise on the diagonal into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 drops chile oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
  1. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add asparagus to pot and cook until tender-crisp and bright green, about 2 minutes. Drain, then plunge into a large bowl of ice water; set aside to cool for about 2 minutes. Drain again, then pat dry with paper towels and set aside.
  2. Whisk together soy sauce, sesame oil, and chile oil in a medium bowl. Add asparagus and toss. Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with sesame seeds.

Mochi Waffles with Brown Butter Bananas

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I’m a sucker for anything made with mochiko flour. Hawaiian butter mochi, mochi ice cream, yaki mochi — I love it. This mochi waffle recipe, adapted from Bon Appetit, is a little chewy, a little sweet, and the perfect vehicle to soak up the delicious syrup from the brown butter bananas.

Ingredients:
  • 1 1/4 cups mochiko flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs, separated
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, divided
  • Nonstick vegetable oil spray
  • 2 bananas, halved lengthwise, sliced crosswise into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 cup maple syrup
  1. Whisk mochiko, all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl. Whisk egg yolks, milk, sugar, and vanilla in a large bowl until smooth. Melt 4 tablespoons butter in a medium skillet over medium heat, then gradually add to egg yolk mixture, whisking constantly; reserve skillet. Add dry ingredients to bowl and whisk until smooth. Lightly whisk egg whites in a small bowl until foamy, then whisk into batter.
  2. Heat a waffle iron on high; lightly coat with nonstick spray. Pour 1/2 cup batter (or enough to cover surface) onto iron and cook until waffles are golden brown and cooked through, about 4 minutes. Repeat with remaining batter, coating iron with more nonstick spray as needed.
  3. Meanwhile, melt remaining 4 tablespoons butter in reserved skillet over medium-high heat. Cook bananas, cut side down, undisturbed, until bananas are browned and butter is amber, about 3 minutes. Stir in maple syrup and remove from heat.
  4. Serve waffles topped with bananas and sauce.

Korean Chicken Stew with Sweet Potato Noodles

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This spicy stew is a riff on dakjjim, a one-pot Korean braised chicken dish that’s cooked with danmyeon, or sweet potato noodles. I love these noodles’ chewy texture and they’re perfect for soaking up the sweet and savory braising liquid. Make this on a rainy day and serve with rice and kimchi for the ultimate comfort meal.

Ingredients:

  • 1 (3.5 ounce) package of sweet potato nooldes (dangmyeon), also called glass noodles
  • 1/4 cup gochujang
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons gochugaru
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced peeled ginger
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, quartered
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth or bone broth
  • 1 palm-size piece kombu seaweed
  • 1 large russet potato (1 pound) peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 carrot, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1/2 onion, cut into thin wedges
  • Chopped green onions, for garnish
  • Toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
  • White rice, for serving
  • Kimchi, for serving
  1. Place the noodles in a large bowl, add warm water to cover, and set aside to soak until you need them.
  2. In a small bowl, stir together the gochujang, soy sauce, gochugaru, oyster sauce, honey, garlic, ginger, and sesame oil until blended.
  3. Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. When hot, add the avocado oil, then the chicken, and cook the chicken until it is evenly cooked on the outside, 8 to 10 minutes, turning when it releases easily from the pan. Add the soy sauce mixture, chicken broth, kombu, and 2 cups water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove the kombu.
  4. Add the potato, carrot, and onion to the pot. Increase the heat to medium, cover, and simmer until the carrots are tender, another 15 minutes or so.
  5. Drain and add the noodles to the pot and let them cook until translucent and soft, another minute or so. Serve the stew garnished with green onions and toasted sesame seeds, with a side of kimchi. (To make this dish ahead of time, cook through step 4, then when reheating soak and add the noodles to the soup as you reheat it the next day.)

Weeknight Turkey Curry

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I can’t really categorize this dish: it’s a little bit South Asian, a little bit East Asian, a little bit American. It’s comfort food, though, and an easy one at that. Make this when you’re trying to clear out your pantry, serve over rice, and you’re golden.

Ingredients:
  • 1 onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons avocado oil
  • 1 pound ground turkey (or beef)
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • Pepper, to taste
  • 5 teaspoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon Madras curry poweder
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 4 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 2 ounces Japanese curry sauce mix (such as House Foods Vermont Curry or S&B Golden Curry)
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 4 cups cooked rice and kimchi, for serving
  1. Pulse onion, carrots, and garlic in a food processor until finely chopped. Transfer to a small bowl.
  2. Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high. Add turkey, salt, and season with pepper. Cook, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until lightly browned, 6-8 minutes. Add onion mixture and cook, stirring often, until vegetables are slightly softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in butter, then sprinkle flour over and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add curry powder and turmeric and cook, stirring, until spices are fragrant, about 2 minutes.
  3. Mix in soy sauce and fish sauce. Pour in broth and bring to a boil, scraping up any brown bits. Reduce heat and simmer occasionally, until slightly thickened, 8-10 minutes.
  4. Stir in curry sauce mix and simmer, stirring often, until gravy is thick enough to coat a spoon, about 5 minutes. Stir in cream and remove from heat.
  5. Serve curry on top of rice in serving bowls and with kimchi on the side.

Korean-Style Mixed Rice with Raw Fish

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This is one of my favorite things I made this summer, hands down. Think poke bowl vibes but with the flavor amped up to 1000%. A spicy, garlicy sauce brings everything together, from the bracing perilla leaves to the crunchy tobiko. Don’t let the long ingredient list put you off — this is unequivocally worth it.

Korean style mixed rice with raw fish

Ingredients:

For the sauce:

  • 1/3 cup gochujang
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons minced peeled ginger

For the mixed rice:

  • 4 cups mixed salad greens
  • 2 green Korean chili peppers (or similar), chopped
  • 10-12 perilla (shiso) leaves, cut into thin strips
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced onion
  • 2 cups peeled Persian or English cucumber matchsticks
  • 1 cup radish sprouts
  • 1 avocado, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 4 cups freshly cooked white rice
  • 1 1/2 pounds sushi grade fish, such as tuna, cut into 1/2-inch cubes and chilled
  • 1/2 cup flying fish roe (tobiko)
  • Toasted sesame seeds, for serving
  • 2 sheets nori, sliced into thin strips
  • Toasted sesame oil, for serving
  1. Make the sauce: combine all the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.
  2. Assemble the mixed rice: Arrange the greens, chili peppers, perilla leaves, onion, cucumber, sprouts, and avocado in the bottom of a large shallow bowl. Spoon the rice on top. Arrange the fish and roe on top of the rice. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and seaweed. Serve with the sauce and sesame oil on the side.