1/4 cup water
1 pound (about 24) fresh asparagus spears, cut into 2-inch pieces
1 small (1/2 cup) onion, sliced 1/4-inch, separated into rings
1 large (1 cup) red bell pepper, cut into 2x1/2-inch pieces
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh garlic
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh ginger root*
1 tablespoon rice vinegar or cider vinegar
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 to 1 teaspoon chili puree with garlic
Place water and asparagus in 2-quart casserole dish. Cover; microwave 3-4 minutes or until asparagus is bright green. Drain; set aside.
Melt butter in 10-inch skillet until sizzling; add onion. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, 1 minute or until onion is softened. Add asparagus; continue cooking, stirring constantly, 1-2 minutes or until asparagus is crisply tender. Stir in bell pepper, garlic and ginger root. Continue cooking, stirring constantly, 1-2 minutes or until bell pepper is crisply tender. Remove skillet from heat.
Combine all sauce ingredients in bowl. Add sauce to vegetables; toss to coat.
*Substitute 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger.
Chili puree with garlic is available in the Oriental section of large grocery stores.