Boiling veggies is passé.
We prefer roasting and stir-frying our vegetables, especially delicate asparagus. The flavor of asparagus is rich and mouthwatering when cooked well.
Honestly, I’m known for being opinionated, so let me rant for a paragraph. Usually I try to behave but I feel very strongly about this one. We do not boil, and rarely steam, vegetables. Boiling strips your food of nutrients and leaves them tasteless and soggy – so unless you’re making broth, leave the water in the pipes.
This recipe is a stir-fry, or in India, a sabzi. Sabzi, I think, is simply translated as ‘vegetable’. Here it represents a vegetable dish that is cooked as a stir-fry or dry curry.
Celebrate local offerings while honoring global flavors.
Traditionally, the seasoning I chose would be used for potatoes and beans. We made this with asparagus because I love combining in-season local produce with seasonings from around the world that honor their flavors, history, and culture. I bring it all together in a dish that can be enjoyed by locals and visitors alike.
For example, I designed this asparagus recipe to celebrate the amazing flavors of Punjab, a state in the northwest of India. This whole region, Punjab and its neighbors, combine flavors in a way that’s really indescribable except through their recipes.
You may not recognize some of these ingredients. Amchur (mango) powder is a tangy powder made from dried unripe green mangos. It really adds a unique flavor that you can’t skip in this recipe. If you don’t have a local Indian store, you can order mango powder from Amazon. Kashmiri chili powder is different from the Mexican-style you commonly find at grocery store, so we recommend it, but you CAN sub the common kind. We have our own recipe and a brief explanation for garam masala in another post here or you can find that in some stores, also.
It’s all delicious, rich in flavor, and completely unique.
This recipe for Asparagus Punjabi Style celebrates spring and honors the amazing flavors of Punjab, a state in the northwest of India.
3 tablespoons peanut oil (or more, if needed to cover the bottom of the pan)
1/2 teaspoon black mustard seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 medium sweet bell pepper (red, orange or yellow)
1 pound asparagus, cut into 1” pieces
1 teaspoon Kashmiri chili powder
1/2 teaspoon garam masala
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon amchur (mango) powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- Heat the peanut oil on medium-high heat in a large sauté pan. Add the mustard seeds and cumin and sauté until the mustard seeds start to pop (you’ll know it when you see it).
- Add the onion and bell pepper and sauté for 3-5 minutes, or until the onions are translucent.
- Add the asparagus, then the chili powder, garam masala, ground turmeric, amchur powder, and salt and mix well.
- Add the water, lower heat to simmer, and cover. Allow to simmer for 5-7 minutes, or until the asparagus is tender.
- Remove from heat and sprinkle with lemon juice, mix lightly, and serve.
Keywords: Punjab, Punjabi, India, Indian, Pakistan, Pakistani, asparagus, spicy, vegetable, vegetarian, vegan
*Disclosure: We’re only linking to products we would use. Any comments we make about them are our own opinions. This post may contain affiliate links. You don’t pay a higher price, but we may earn a small commission.