I love asparagus, especially this time of year: as a side or in a salad or pasta dish.
Asparagus Sesame Salad
1 pound asparagus
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon roasted sesame oil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1/8 teaspoon coarse salt
1 1/2 cups baby arugula, mesclun or baby spinach salad
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1. Heat a large pan of lightly salted water to boiling over high heat. Peel the asparagus stalks and trim the ends. Cut the stalks diagonally into 1-inch pieces. Blanch in boiling water 3 minutes or until bright green. Drain in a colander and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking.
2. In a large bowl, combine the vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, cilantro, and salt. Add the asparagus and toss until well combined.
3. To serve, mound some salad greens on each of 4 plates. Spoon the dressed asparagus onto the greens and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
PS- I have always struggled with keeping asparagus fresh in the fridge. I have learned the key is to wrap the bottom of the stems in moist paper towels and drop the bundle into a plastic bag. This keeps them from drying out and shriveling.