Steamed Asparagus with Tahini Dressing and Black Sesame Oil

by | Jun 6, 2016

Like a child at the dinner table, I leave the stubs – the tough base of asparagus spears – floating in a paint storm of black sesame oil and tahini dressing. The bright green steamed spears sit fat and happy in a nutty-salty drizzle of sesame. Mmm.  I’ve become patient enough this year to practice the ritual of steaming vegetables, and asparagus is best when she’s briefly steamed, until glowing green, holding within her the sweet and temporary spirit of spring. Asparagus is cut from the crown of the plant, like a grass, and revisited once a year for her succulent stems. Selecting the best from farmers markets and supermarkets should be approached with careful attention. The spring season is the time the juiciest, sweetest stems can be readily found.

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A bundle of washed and trimmed asparagus spears

Black sesame oil:
1 tbsp. black sesame paste
1 tsp. MCT oil
1 tsp. umeboshi plum vinegar (or brown rice vinegar + pinch of salt)

Tahini Dressing:
2 tbsp. tahini
2 tbsp. lemon juice
1 tbsp. MCT oil

pinch of salt

Bring a large pot of water to a boil using a layered bamboo steamer, if possible. Lay spears in a single layer to steam for 5-10 minutes, depending on thickness. Blend all ingredients for tahini dressing in a food processor. Let stand or cool in fridge.

In a small bowl, mix ingredients together for black sesame oil. When asparagus is a vibrant green and tender, remove and place on a serving plate. Drizzle with tahini dressing, then follow with the black sesame oil. If you desire, sprinkle a pinch of finishing salt like red alaea salt.