You’ll find a lot of versions of meat-wrapped asparagus cooked in teriyaki (or similar) sauce on the web. In many of them, strips of beef (cut like bacon rashers) are wound around the asparagus.
For this recipe, I used sukiyaki-cut beef, sliced like ham but thinner, to make wrapping easier and to make sure that the beef cooks in only a few minutes.
Because this is a food blog and optics are paramount, I opted to leave the tips of the asparagus spears exposed. You don’t have to. You can wrap the spears completely with the beef slices.
Cooking consists of two steps. The first is browning the beef in a little oil to give it texture. And, to make sure that the sauce will stick better to the meat later, the beef is coated with a a bit of rice flour before the rolls are dropped into the frying pan.
The half-cooked beef rolls are scooped out and the teriyaki sauce is poured into the pan along with grated ginger (optional but recommended). The browned beef and asparagus rolls are arranged in a single layer in the simmering sauce and cooked just long enough for the meat to absorb all the sauce. By the time that happens, the beef and asparagus will be cooked through.
Beef and asparagus rolls with ginger teriyaki sauce
- 200 grams baby asparagus
- 250 grams sukiyaki-cut beef
- 2 tablespoons rice flour corn starch will do too
- 2 tablespoons sake
- 2 tablespoons mirin
- 2 tablespoons light soy sauce
- ½ teaspoon grated ginger optional
- cooking oil for frying
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
- Rinse and wipe dry the baby asparagus.
- Place a slice of sukiyaki-cut beef flat on your work surface. Place three pieces of baby asparagus on the edge near you. Roll the beef carefully (don’t tear them with heavy hands!) to seal the asparagus. Repeat until all the asparagus have been wrapped or until there are no beef slices left to wrap them with.
- Arrange the beef-wrapped asparagus side by side in a single layer.
- Place one tablespoon of rice flour in a strainer. Hold the strainer above the leftmost wrapped asparagus and, while moving the strainer slowly towards the right, tap gently.
- Turn the beef-wrapped asparagus over. Repeat the flouring procedure with the remaining rice flour.
- Make the teriyaki sauce. Mix together the sake, mirin, soy sauce, and the optional ginger, if using.
- Heat enough cooking oil in a pan to reach a depth of one-fourth inch.
- Fry the beef-wrapped asparagus in batches of four or five. DO NOT overcook them. Just brown and sear then scoop out and move to a plate.
- When all the wrapped asparagus have been browned and seared, pour the teriyaki sauce in the pan. Boil gently for a minute.
- Arrange the fried beef-wrapped asparagus in the pan in a single layer. Cook over high heat, rolling them in the sauce, until the meat has soaked up all the sauce.
- Transfer the beef-wrapped asparagus to a plate. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and serve at once.