4 whole chicken legs (thighs and drumsticks; about 11 oz each)
2 tbsp olive oil
1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 cup fresh corn kernels (from about 2 ears of corn)
1 tbsp finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk
Zest of 1 lime, removed in wide strips with a vegetable peeler
2 tbsp Thai or Vietnamese fish sauce (nam pla or nuoc mam)
8 oz asparagus, woody stems trimmed, cut diagonally in half
1/4 cup packed torn fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
1 lime, cut into wedges, for serving
Season the chicken with salt. Heat a large deep heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil, then place the chicken skin side down in the skillet and cook for about 3 minutes, or until the skin side is browned. Turn and brown the other side, about 3 minutes more. Transfer the chicken to a plate.
Drain all but 1 tablespoon of fat from the skillet and return the pan to medium-high heat. Add the onions, corn, ginger, lime zest and garlic and cook, stirring often, for about 3 minutes, or until fragrant. Stir in the almond milk and fish sauce, return the chicken to the skillet and bring the liquid to a simmer. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer gently for about 45 minutes, or until the chicken shows no sign of pink when pierced at the bone with the tip of a small sharp knife and the liquid has reduced slightly.
Add the asparagus and basil leaves to the chicken and cook for about 2 minutes, or until the asparagus is crisp-tender. Stir in the coconut milk and season to taste with salt.
Divide the stew among four deep soup bowls and serve hot with lime wedges.