I CREATED this dish from a few early spears of asparagus which appeared in a friend's garden. She had suggested we cooked them for lunch, but as there were not enough spears to serve alone as a starter dish, I decided to concoct a stir fry which would make the most of what we'd got. It really was a matter of opening the larder doors and pulling out ingredients I believed would go together. It was great fun, but we didn't measure anything, we simply threw in a handful of this and a handful of that. So, on acquiring more asparagus from a farmer friend, I cooked the dish again, measuring all the ingredients as I went so that I could write it up.

To serve two, you will need: 8oz (225g) king prawns Half bunch freshly harvested asparagus Half pound new potatoes One bunch spring onions 50g (2oz) fresh beanshoots Half small bunch coriander One sprig mint One clove garlic - chopped fine One piece ginger as big as a walnut - chopped fine Vegetable oil Soy sauce Ground peppercorns to season (the soy sauce will provide the salt) Method: First prepare the asparagus by cutting away the woody part of the spears and cut each into three Scrape the skins of the new potatoes, cut into four and boil in salted water with the mint until almost cooked. Toss the asparagus pieces into the pot with the potatoes and cook for about three mins or until the asparagus begins to soften. Remove from the heat and drain. Discard the mint Cut the spring onions into four, discarding the root and greenery Chop the coriander, ginger root and garlic clove Rinse the beanshoots under cold running water Cover the bottom of a large frying pan in enough vegetable oil to form a film and turn the heat up high When the oil is really hot, toss in the king prawns and fry until the tail ends turn pink Lower the heat a little and add the garlic and ginger, cook for just a minute, then add the spring onions, new potatoes and asparagus, stirring as you go Now toss in the chopped corriander, a teaspoon of soy sauce and the beanshoots Stir, taste, adding a touch of ground peppercorns and a little more soy if needed, also a few drops of water to dilute if necessary.