Asparagus with Wild Chanterelles
Excellent as a side dish, an appetizer, or as a vegetarian main course, this is an elegant, versatile yet easy preparation.
When warm rains combine with lots of sunshine to make the forest floors lush and fertile, summer wild chanterelle mushrooms begin to appear.
Clean and pick the mushrooms to remove debris. Rinse as quickly as possible under running water, keeping in mind that too much soaking will diminish the flavor of fresh mushrooms. Remove and discard the stems, and chop the caps into strips about 1-inch wide.
Wash the asparagus, trimming and discarding the tough stems.
In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch and 2 teaspoons of cold water.
Heat a wok over high heat and add the vegetable oil. Rotate the wok to coat all of the sides with the oil. Add the garlic, asparagus, and salt. Stir-fry for 1-2 minutes.
Add the fresh chanterelles, continuing to stir-fry until thoroughly mixed, then add the oyster sauce.
Stir in the chicken broth and heat until the mixture starts to boil, then stir in the cornstarch mixture. Cook and stir until the mixture begins to thicken, which should take between 30-60 seconds.
Turn off the heat, remove asparagus with tongs, and arrange across a platter. Top with the mushroom mixture.