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To cook the rice, bring a large pot of water to boil. Add the rinsed rice and continue boiling for 30 minutes, reducing heat as necessary to prevent overflow. Remove from heat, drain the rice and return the rice to pot. Cover and let the rice rest for 10 minutes or longer, until you’re ready to serve.
Warm a large skillet with deep sides over medium heat. Once it’s hot, add a couple teaspoons of oil. Cook the onion, ginger and garlic with a sprinkle of salt for about 5 minutes, stirring often. Add the asparagus and carrots and cook for 3 more minutes, stirring occasionally. Then add the curry paste and cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes.
Pour the coconut milk into the pan, along with 1/2 cup water and 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar. Bring the mixture to a simmer. Reduce heat as necessary to maintain a gentle simmer and cook until the carrots and asparagus are tender and cooked through, about 5 to 10 minutes.
Once the vegetables are done cooking, stir the spinach into the mixture and cook until the spinach has wilted, about 30 seconds. Remove the curry from heat and season with rice vinegar and soy sauce. Add salt and red pepper flakes (optional), to taste. Divide rice and curry into bowls and garnish with chopped cilantro and a sprinkle of red pepper flakes, if you’d like.