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yve yve is a female
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Szechuan pepper / Zanthoxylum piperitum Reply to this Post Post Reply with Quote Edit/Delete Posts Report Post to a Moderator       Go to the top of this page

Szechuan pepper does not belong to the pepper plants. It is often mistaken for one but it is fact the berries of the yellowoodtree. Szechuan pepper has several other names like anise pepper (This name is caused by the fact that the berries look very similar to real anise), Mountain apple, Blossom pepper, japanesepepper, Chinese pepper or Indonesian lemon pepper.
Szechuan pepper is very wide spread in Asia but it is also grown on the American continent as well as in Africa. The Szechuan pepper we usually buy in Europe comes mainly from south china and Vietnam.

In japan not only the berries of the Szechuan pepper are used but also the leaves. The Szechuanpeppertree is quite small and the leaves are feathered. Its blossoms are white to green in colour and are harvested and dried before they are ripe. The fruits contain several essential oils (especially terpene, geraniol, cineol, citronellal). The essential oils improve salivation and digestion. The spiciness of Szechuanpepper comes from an amide which is in the inner hulls. The seeds themselve are bitter and are removed.

The smell of Szechuan pepper can be compared to lemon. When roasted it becomes spicier and the smell becomes more intensive.

Szechuan pepper can be bought in well sorted supermarkets or in Asia shops. It can be bought in berries or grounded. When possible take the whole berries and ground them in a mortar because the aroma will be more intensive. When stored it should be kept away from air and light.

Before using Szechuan pepper it should be roasted in a pan without oil. This will help the aroma to develop. After that ground it in a mortar. Never cook it for a long time as it will lose its flavour. Add it to the meal just shortly before serving.

Szechuan pepper belong to the fivespicepowder in the Chinese kitchen and to the sevenspicepowder of the Japanese kitchen.

>From a medical point of view (traditionally in the USA) Szechuan pepper its used against toothache where it should prove to be pain relieving. The bark as well as the fruits have a stimulating effect and are ingredients in herb medication for blood cleaning and improvement of digestion and rheumatism.

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Gruß yve Smile

Wenn ich mein Leben noch einmal leben könnte, würde ich die gleichen Fehler machen. Aber ein bisschen früher, damit ich mehr davon habe.

Marlene Dietrich (1901 - 1992)
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