These peppercorns are freshly harvested and de-seeded in 2022.
Even among the diverse powerhouse that is Chinese cuisine, the Szechuan region is so distinctive, bold, and iconic that it is rightfully considered a genre unto itself. Although an unpacking of its significance requires more space than we have here, it’s fair to say that the Szechuan pepper is the key foundational ingredient — a core block on which so much else is built.
Fundamentally, Szechuan peppercorns are the berries of certain species of prickly ash, and they’re actually more closely related to citrus or rue than traditional peppercorns. Their sensory hallmark is the tingling sensation they produce on the palate, and the way this tactile eccentricity enhances and engages with any web of flavors around it is what makes them such a uniquely special ingredient. These red peppercorns were harvested and de-seeded this year, and come from a more common variety of prickly ash than the rarer, more intense green Szechuan peppercorns. These have a balanced, round flavor profile and a potent-but-palatable level of mouth-numbing spice.