19 Jan 2022: Turmeric-Black Pepper Chicken with Asparagus

Stir fry meals are not only easy to put together, they offer opportunities to change things up based on whatever is on hand. For example, the protein in this stir fry – although delicious with chicken thighs – could just as easily be tofu; the asparagus could also be substituted.

New York Time’s food contributor and cookbook author Ali Slagle recently published this recipe in the NYT Food column. For this homecook, any recipe can be adapted to what is in the fridge or freezer, particularly as we negotiate food supply shortages, that makes for a winner.

Turmeric-Black Pepper Chicken With Asparagus

Recipe by Ali Slagle, New York Times Food Contributor


  • 3 TBS honey
  • ¾ tsp black pepper
  •  Kosher salt
  • 2 TBSP all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 TBSP coconut or canola oil (I used coconut oil)
  • 12 ounces asparagus, trimmed and thinly sliced on an angle
  • 1 tsp unseasoned rice vinegar or soy sauce (I used rice vinegar)
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges (optional-as a garnish/finish)


  1. In a small bowl or measuring cup, stir together 1/4 cup water with the honey, pepper and 1/2 teaspoon salt; set honey mixture aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, turmeric and 1 teaspoon salt. Add the chicken and toss until coated. (I used a zip bag for this step)
  3. In a medium (10-inch) nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium-high. Add the chicken and cook until the turmeric is fragrant and the chicken is golden brown on both sides, 2 to 3 minutes per side.
  4. Add the asparagus, season with salt, stir to combine and cook until crisp-tender, 1 to 2 minutes.
  5. Add the honey mixture and cook, stirring, until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce has thickened, 2 to 3 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat and stir in the vinegar, if using. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  7. Option: Serve with lime squeezed over top, if you like.

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