Asparagus the Japanese Way

Asparagus the Japanese Way - Mustard Dressing and Bonito Flakes

There are two major categories in Japanese salads — sunomono (“vinegared things”) and aemono (“dressed things”). This crisp asparagus salad falls under aemono where a simple dressing of Japanese mustard, egg yolk, and soy sauce is applied sparingly, just enough to provide that distinctive mustard heat.

Weekend Herb Blogging
Weekend Herb Blogging hosted this week by Joanna’s Food

recipe adapted from Shizuo Tsuji’s Japanese Cooking: A Simple Art

Asparagus with Mustard Dressing
アスパラガス辛子あえ (Asuparagasu Karashi-Ae)

20 asparagus spears, trimmed and pared

For the Mustard Dressing:

2 teaspoons Japanese mustard powder + 2 teaspoons water
1 egg yolk
1 tsp soy sauce
dried bonito flakes /katsuo-bushi (optional)


  • Substitute 4 teaspoons Dijon mustard for the Japanese mustard powder  mixture.

Cut the asparagus into 1 to 2-inch lengths. Prepare a bowl filled with iced water.

Blanche/parboil the asparagus in lightly salted boiling water for 1-2 minutes. Shock the asparagus in the bowl of iced water to stop the cooking and lock in the bright green color.

If using the Japanese mustard powder, mix with 2 teaspoons of water in a bowl to make a paste and let stand for about 10 minutes. Beat in the egg yolk and the soy sauce with the mustard. Sprinkle the mustard dressing with dried bonito flakes if using. Toss the asparagus in the bowl with the mustard dressing and serve at room temperature.

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14 Responses to “Asparagus the Japanese Way”

  1. Joanna says:

    I love this completely new to me way of cooking asparagus, thanks for sharing!


  2. Michele says:

    Wow. This is…exactly what I want to eat.

  3. Snackgrab » Blog Archive » Market haul: Ramps, asparagus, tomatoes says:

    [...] For those who prefer their asparagus without eggs, a nice mustard dressing for your green or white spears. [Apple Pie, Patis and Pate] [...]

  4. GirlCanBake says:

    So simple and delicious! I love the look of this asparagus!

  5. Natashya says:

    Beautiful, simple presentation. I would love to learn more about Japanese cooking. I was born in Kobe, about a hundred years ago, but aside from California Rolls (I know, they are an American creation) I don’t know how to cook anything Japanese. Thank you for this lovely WHB post!

  6. Kevin says:

    That looks good! I do something similar with miso and mustard.

    last blog post: Strawberry Danish Braid

  7. Thanks guys… Japanese cooking can be pretty intimidating at first but after stocking up on the essentials, it’s simple but refined.

  8. maybelles mom (feeding maybelle) says:

    I think this would be very nice in my bento. thank you.

    last blog post: Garlic Scapes: A Fast Breakdown

  9. Weekend Herb Blogging round up | An English Kitchen says:

    [...] about asparagus the Japanese way? You’ll find it at Apple Pie, Patis and Paté, dressed in a mustard [...]

  10. Caryn Hitzeman says:

    Hi there! Have you tried any of the Japanese recipe listed here?

  11. Marc the healthy food lover says:

    This is a great way to eat the asparagus. When i lived in Japan I loved it. At this time eating for me was a mean of survival more than a mean of pleasure so I never really paid attention to how things were cooked. Thanks for this great recipe and the memories it bring back to me. I loved living in JAPAN:-)

  12. Ted says:

    I love this with buta no kakuni!

  13. Asparagus with Mustard Dressing – Japanese Recipe | Apple Pie, Patis, and Pâté Recipes « Antony Fisher says:

    [...] Source Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. [...]

  14. cleaning septic says:

    I think these guys can help

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