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Panko-Crusted Asparagus Spears

  • 25 m
  • 50 m
Victoria Abbott Riccardi
“Warm from the oven, these crunchy asparagus spears make a tasty side dish or cocktail nibble. Before being coated in panko breadcrumbs they are rolled in a flavorful sesame-miso sauce that doubles as a simple dipping sauce.”


    • Cooking spray, preferably canola oil
    • ⅓ cup low-fat mayonnaise
    • 2 scallions, trimmed and finely chopped
    • 2 tablespoons white miso (see Notes)
    • 1 teaspoon chile-garlic sauce
    • ½ teaspoon toasted sesame oil
    • 1 bunch asparagus (about 1 pound), trimmed
    • ¾ cup Japanese-style panko (see Notes)
    • ¼ cup sesame seeds


  • 1 Preheat oven to 450°F. Line a baking sheet with foil; coat with cooking spray.
  • 2 Combine mayonnaise, scallions, miso, chile-garlic sauce and oil in a small bowl.
  • 3 Place asparagus in a shallow dish and toss with half the miso mixture (about ¼ cup), making sure the asparagus is well coated.
  • 4 Combine panko and sesame seeds in another shallow dish. Working with one spear at a time, roll in the panko mixture and place on the prepared baking sheet, leaving a bit of room between each spear. Coat the prepared spears with cooking spray.
  • 5 Roast the asparagus until the coating is browned and crispy and the asparagus is tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Serve with the remaining miso mixture as a dipping sauce.
  • Notes: Miso is fermented soybean paste made by inoculating a mixture of soybeans, salt and grains (usually barley or rice) with koji, a beneficial mold. Miso is undeniably salty, so a little goes a long way. White or sweet miso (Shiromiso), made with soy and rice, is yellow and milder in flavor; use for soup, salad dressings and sauces for fish or chicken. Look for it near tofu at well-stocked supermarkets.
  • Although we typically use whole-wheat panko-style breadcrumbs, for this recipe we recommend using white, Japanese-style panko breadcrumbs for the best texture and flavor. Look for them in the Asian-food section of most supermarkets or near other breadcrumbs.
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