This is a really nice side dish for an Asian-inspired dinner. Well, for any dinner, really. I love spring onions. They are like giant scallions, but more onion-y and maybe a bit sweeter. At any rate, they’re darned delicious.
Clean the onions and the gai lan. This is cooked in the oven, but you may grill these, if you have the grill going. If that’s what you choose to do, then toss the veggies with the oil and grill until slightly browned, turn and brown on the other side. Then brush with the hoisin mixture the last 45-60 seconds of grilling. That’s all there is to it! If you’re oven roasting them, place the cleaned veggies in a heavy skillet, drizzle with oil, a good sprinkle of salt and toss. Your fingers work best for this. Place the skillet in the oven, and while the veggies roast and near their pinnacle of flavor, mix up the hoisin sauce—or more accurately, the sauce made with some hoisin and other good things! At the 6-8 minutes mark, remove the skillet from the oven (remember to use a pot holder—that handle is screaming hot!), turn the broiler on to HIGH. Drizzle the sauce over the veggies, slide the pan back under the broiler and broil until the onions pick up some color and the sauce is bubbly. Next time I would cook the gai lan for about 4 minutes, then add the onions and cook for another 6 minutes. I like the gai lan a bit on the crunchy side, but the onions cook more quickly and were much softer…still very tasty, but softer. This is a great side dish with steak and it’s as good at warm, room temperature as it is hot.
Hoisin-Sauced, Roasted Gai Lan and Spring Onions
- 3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
- 1 1/2 tablespoons lower-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Asian sesame oil
- 1/2 teaspoon Sriracha or 1/4 teaspoons red pepper flakes (“the heat”)
- 6-8 small spring onions or 1 bunch green onions, trimmed
- 6-8 thin-stemmed gai lan, trimmed
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
Combine hoisin, vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil and ”the heat” in a bowl; set aside. Preheat the oven to 450°F.
Place the spring onions and gai lan in a heavy cast iron skillet or other oven-proof pan. Toss green onions and gai lan with the oil; sprinkle with pepper and salt. Heat the pan over medium-high heat for 2 minutes. Remove the skillet from the burner and place in the oven. Roast for 6-8 minutes, turning half-way through. The onions shouldn’t be mushy. Remove the pan from the oven. Turn the broiler to HIGH. Brush with the mixture; place under the broiler and broil for 1 minute. Turn and broil on the second side for 1 additional minute. Remove from the oven, place on a platter and drizzle with any remaining sauce. Serve immediately or serve at room temperature.
NOTE: You may substitute asparagus spears for the gai lan, if you wish. Or you may add them to the gai lan and spring onions; then double the hoisin mixture.
Hoisin-Sauced, Roasted Gai Lan and Spring Onion Recipe©Marcia Lahens 2018. All rights reserved.