Meatless Monday … Sesame Asparagus Stir-Fry

Mastering the art of stir-fry means you’ve mastered a quick and healthy meal option that has hundreds of variations. Here’s a quick and unique recipe that contains some ingredients you might not consider stir-fry standards: Black beans and tomatoes.

If you’ve picked up some fine looking asparagus at the supermarket on impulse and need a recipe to use it in, try Sesame Asparagus Stir-Fry, found in the “1,001 Low-Fat Vegetarian Recipes” cookbook.

Unless you like adding tofu into stir fries, your typical dish may lack protein. With this stir fry, the black beans provide ample protein in a low-fat punch.

Legumes like black beans are a very good source of fiber, which “prevents blood sugar levels from rising too rapidly after a meal, making these beans an especially good choice for individuals with diabetes, insulin resistance or hypoglycemia. When combined with whole grains such as brown rice, black beans provide virtually fat-free high quality protein.” (source here).

They’re also a good source of folate, magnesium, iron and manganese.

And, according to the website, World’s Healthiest Foods, “Research published in the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry indicates that black beans are as rich in antioxidant compounds called anthocyanins as grapes and cranberries, fruits long considered antioxidant superstars. … Overall, the level of antioxidants found in black beans in this study is approximately 10 times that found in an equivalent amount of oranges, and comparable to that found in an equivalent amount of grapes or cranberries.”

They’ve also been found to help protect against cancer and lower the risk of heart attack death.

Some notes on the recipe: This calls for Mandarin sesame sauce, which you’ll find in the Asian aisle of the supermarket or at an Asian grocery store. You can substitute another flavor that sounds interesting if you can’t find Mandarin sesame sauce.

Sesame Asparagus Stir-Fry
Recipe courtesy “1,001 Low-Fat Vegetarian Recipes”
4 servings

8 ounces asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces
1/4 teaspoon dried pepper flakes
1 can (15 ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained
1 jar (14 ounces) Mandarin sesame sauce for noodles and rice
1 small tomato, coarsely chopped
1 package (16 ounces) Chinese egg noodles, coked warm; or rice

Begin cooking noodles or rice before preparing the rest of the recipe.

Stir-fry asparagus over medium-high heat in lightly greased wok or medium skillet for 3 to 4 minutes or until browned. Add red pepper flakes; cook 1 minute longer. Add beans and Mandarin sesame sauce and cook 2 to 3 minutes; stir in tomato. Serve over noodles or rice.


About kareiner

I'm an active mom who loves to cook. I'm passionate about health and fitness. I'm no expert, nutritionist, personal trainer or miracle worker. I just like being active and I like good food.
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