Asian-Roasted Asparagus with Fried Eggs

I came up with this recipe after I bought my first asparagus of the season, during a trip to the farmers' market. They were the pencil-thin variety, and the bunches were standing so green and tall. I couldn't resist!

Just a few yards away, the Dragon Gourmet Mushrooms stand was already starting to sell out. I walked up and glanced at the king trumpets and beech mushrooms, but ultimately decided on a couple baskets of oysters.Their broad caps fan out and are so eye-catching.

It was a warm, sunny morning, and the market was bustling with eager shoppers. My recipe for Asian-Roasted Asparagus with Fried Eggs was inspired by this, another successful day at the farmers' market!

I love bringing my niece and nephew to the farmers' market with me. I just pack up a bag, load 'em into the car, and we're off. (Not to mention, the basket on my niece's stroller is perfect for stowing bags of produce...) Whenever we pull into the parking lot, the first thing that they want to do is make a beeline to the kettle corn booth. (Just like their Auntie! Smart kids.) Freshly-made treats are a fun benefit of making a trip to the market, like the shave ice and wood-fired pizzas that we also bought...and devoured. The kids dart around and point out everything for sale, and that curiosity helps me teach them a lot about food. Plus, this helps develop their appetite!

By the time we finished up and got back home, it was right in between "late breakfast" and "early lunch"...aka brunch...So, I decided to do an Asian twist on a classic pairing of asparagus and egg.

The man from Tao Farm told me that trimming these pencil asparagus wouldn't be I only trimmed about a 1/2 inch...ssshhh don't tell him...Then, I cut the asparagus in half and gave them a quick rinse.

While oyster mushrooms look absolutely beautiful in their large bunches, I chopped them into smaller pieces to be mixed in with the asparagus.

The marinade had 4 ingredients: sesame oil, oyster sauce, black bean garlic sauce, and fresh ginger. Oyster sauce is a common ingredient in Chinese cooking, used for dishes like noodles and stir-frys. It's made with oyster "extract", and I thought it would go great with the oyster mushrooms. The black bean garlic sauce is made with salted, fermented black beans and adds a very rich, savory flavor to the fresh vegetables. To add some brightness and zing to these sauces, I grated fresh ginger.

Everything gets mixed together in a large bowl. One ingredient that I added at the last second was freshly grated lemon zest. I bought a few meyer lemons from Snow's Citrus Court and thought...Why not??? I already love roasting vegetables with lemon zest, and this addition just brings a little more brightness to your palate.

I tossed the asparagus halves in this marinade until everything was completely coated.

If you're wondering why I didn't toss the mushrooms in as well, that's because I didn't want the delicate pieces to fall apart. I put a layer of mushrooms on the bottom of a dish, then asparagus, then mushrooms again, and so on and so on... It worked out pretty well because the mushrooms acted like little sponges, soaking up some of the roasting liquid.

425 degrees and 15 minutes later... The marinade created a little sauce at the bottom, the mushrooms were infused with all of that flavor, and the asparagus were tender and slightly browned.

Next, time to fry some eggs. In goes 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter...Yes. Half of a stick of butter. You can fry 2-3 eggs at a time.

As soon as the butter melted and there were tiny bubbles coming up, I gently cracked the eggs right into the cast-iron skillet. I also turned the heat from medium to low after adding the eggs.

See all of that yummy melted butter? This is why I used half of a stick. You can use a spoon to baste the tops of the egg with hot butter, gently cooking the whites and adding yummy butter flavor. The trick is to not let the pan get too hot and make the eggs bubble and splatter.  

Perfectly cooked sunny-side up eggs! Every time! :)

I topped each serving of roasted asparagus with a fried egg. Then, garnished with freshly cracked pepper, sea salt, and toasted sesame seeds.

The creamy egg yolk makes a super-rich sauce all on its own. It just drips down and coats the asparagus and mushrooms. Mmmmmm. I love fried eggs.

If you want to make something a little different for brunch, try this recipe! Add sriracha-hollandaise and you've got a tasty twist on eggs benedict. Or, serve it with some smoked salmon!

Asian-Style Roasted Asparagus with Fried Eggs (serves 6-8)

Print Recipe

1 bunch Pencil Asparagus, washed & cut in half
1/2 lb Fresh Oyster Mushrooms, roughly chopped
1 tbsp Black Bean Garlic Sauce
1 tbsp Oyster Sauce
1 tbsp Sesame Oil
2 in. segment Ginger, grated
Large Eggs, for frying
Unsalted Butter, for frying
Salt & Pepper, to taste
Toasted Sesame Seeds, for garnish

  1.  In a large mixing bowl, combine the black bean garlic sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, and grated ginger. Add the cut asparagus, and toss with the marinade.
  2. On a foil/parchment-lined baking sheet or baking dish, add an even layer of chopped mushrooms, then asparagus. Repeat this layering with the remaining vegetables. Roast in a 425 degree oven for 12-15 minutes. Transfer to a serving platter or individual plates.
  3. To fry eggs, melt butter in a cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Gently crack up to 3 eggs into the pan, then turn the heat to low. Baste the tops of the eggs with spoonfuls of hot butter, to gently cook the egg whites. 
  4. Top the asparagus with fried eggs. Garnish with freshly cracked pepper, sea salt, and toasted sesame seeds.
  5. Serve immediately on its own or with rice, noodles, or a protein of your choice. Enjoy!