Euro-Asian fusion means cross-blending whatever works; so feel free to substitute linguine for the lo mein noodles and to add other vegetables, such as julienned carrots or thinly sliced bok choy, to cook with the ginger and garlic.

To make a more substantial meal, top servings the servings with grilled or stir-fried large shrimp.

I prepare a full recipe even when I need only two servings, because the chilled leftovers make a delectable lunch the next day.

Soy-Sesame Sauce

3 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon dark (Asian) sesame oil

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Dash of ground white pepper, or to taste

To complete the recipe

1 tablespoon canola oil

1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup asparagus in 1-inch-long diagonally cut pieces

3 ounces shiitake mushrooms, caps cut into ½-inch-wide slices

1 cup fresh bean sprouts

½ yellow bell pepper, cut into ¼-inch-wide lengthwise strips

2 scallions, diagonally cut into 1 ½-inch-long pieces

8 ounces lo mein noodles garnish (optional): black sesame seeds or toasted white sesame seeds

Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat.

Meanwhile, stir together the sauce ingredients in a small bowl; set aside.

Heat the oil in a large nonstick sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the ginger and garlic; cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the asparagus; cook, stirring constantly, just until it begins to become crisp-tender, about 2 minutes.

Add the mushrooms, bean sprouts, bell pepper, and scallions; continue to cook, stirring constantly, until the asparagus is crisp-tender, about 4 more minutes. Remove from the heat.

While the vegetables are cooking, add the noodles to the pot of boiling water. When the water returns to a boil, stir occasionally to separate the noodles. Reduce the heat to medium-high and cook for about 3 or 4 minutes, or according to package instructions, until al dente, about 3 to 4 minutes. Drain well.

Return the noodles to the pot. Add the vegetables and sauce mixture; toss over medium heat just until heated through. Taste and adjust the seasoning.