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LOCATION: Recipes >> Vegetables >> Asparagus Flan 01

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Asparagus Flan
Makes 4 to 5 servings

1 1/2 pounds fresh asparagus (divided)
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 cup whipping cream
2 eggs
Salt and pepper
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoons Oriental (dark) sesame oil
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, finely julienned
4 teaspoons rinsed and lightly chopped fermented
black beans (see note)
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
4 cups loosely packed pea shoots
Toasted sesame seeds for garnish (see note)

Break the tough ends off of the asparagus spears. Blanch tips in
boiling water for 1 to 2 minutes. Drain and place in ice water.
Set aside a third of the asparagus. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Butter four 4-ounce ramekins or five 3-ounce ramekins. Cut the
two-thirds portion of asparagus into 1-inch pieces and saute in
the butter for 4 to 6 minutes or until tender. Place the sauteed
asparagus in a blender or food processor with the cornstarch, cream
and eggs. Blend until pureed. Adjust seasoning to taste with salt
and pepper. Pour the asparagus puree into the prepared ramekins
and place in a baking pan. Pour boiling water around the ramekins
until the water is half way up the sides of the molds.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until set.

To serve, cut the one-third portion of asparagus into 4-inch pieces.
In a large saute pan heat the vegetable oil and sesame oil over
high heat. Add the ginger, black beans and garlic, saute until
the garlic starts to sizzle. Add the asparagus and toss until
warmed through. Add the pea shoots, and toss a few times to mix
well. Divide the pea shoot mixture among 4 or 5 warm plates and
unmold a flan on top of each. Garnish with sesame seeds.

Note 1: Fermented black beans are available in Asian markets.

Note 2: To toast sesame seeds, place in a small, heavy, ungreased
skillet over medium-high heat. Toast until you hear the seeds begin
to pop, shaking the pan to keep the seeds from scorching.

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