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Cha Cha Tapas Bar Asparagus Tapas and Red Pepper Sauce

2 large sweet red peppers, cored and seeded
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 T. olive oil
3 to 4 T. red wine vinegar
1/4 C. fresh basil leaves
1 t. salt
Pepper to taste
1/2 C. water
1 lb. fresh asparagus, trimmed
Thin sweet red pepper strips and fresh basil, optional for garnish
Sliced French bread

Coarsely chop red peppers. Cook peppers and garlic in oil over low heat 30 minutes. Puree mixture in food processor or blender. Add vinegar, basil, salt and pepper.

Bring 1 to 1 1/2 inches of water to boil in skillet; add asparagus. Once the water boils again, reduce heat to brisk simmer and cook, uncovered, until fork tender, for 2 to 5 minutes. Remove immediately, drain on paper towels.

Spoon red pepper sauce on platter; arrange asparagus on sauce. Garnish with red pepper strips and fresh basil, if desired, and serve with sliced French bread.

Yield: Four servings.

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