In a nutshell: This extremely rare Chinese pepper will transform your everyday recipes, especially when marinating, grilling or pan-frying simple cuts of meat and poultry.
This amazing pepper is reputed to have once been reserved exclusively for the Chinese Emperor's table. Cultivated 3000 metres above the small village of Nine Dragons in China, our Imperial Red Sichuan pepper is harvested under extreme conditions. Grown in tiny fields at the bottom of a deep and narrow gorge in the province of Sichuan, these plantations are irrigated by glacial melts descending from the Tibetan plateau. In Sichuan, this pepper is paired with chillies to give the characteristic heat of real hard-core Sichuan dishes. One seed is often enough to numb one's tongue (pleasantly so we think) so use in moderation! As our grower proudly declares "It even numbs your lips!" A great pepper to experiment with in small quantities as its fiery, citrus flavour can transform our everyday cooking into something special - we like grinding it over everyday steaks, chicken and pork.
About Épices de Cru
Épices de Cru began in 1982 as a catering partnership between Philippe and Ethné de Vienne. Their mission was a kind of “cooking pot anthropology:” learning the secrets of family cooking around the world and applying these techniques to the needs of hungry Montrealers. The secret, they learned, was spices. Over the last two decades, Philippe and Ethné have searched for the world’s best spices, accompanied by their children, Marika and Arik. The de Viennes believe in direct sourcing spices: visiting growing regions, spending time with growers, and developing personal relationships that last decades. In 2004, they officially opened their first spice shop in Montreal’s fantastic Jean Talon market– it’s since become a mecca for foodies from all over the world. I first visited in 2008 and have been buying and using their spices on a regular basis ever since that first exciting visit. They steadfastly maintain that they do nothing original, only facilitating the exchange of culinary common sense from one place to another. But, what they do is simply quite brilliant - by providing us with the finest quality ingredients, and their superb spice mixes, we can all experiment with unusual spices and recreate delicious recipes from around the world.