Food from Sichuan in China's southwest is known for its mala 麻辣, or numbingly spicy, flavor. The numbing sensation comes from Sichuan peppercorns.
Three Goldthread producers tried their hand at cooking with Sichuan peppercorns (watch the video above!). The dishes ranged from college-dorm simple (think ramen omelet) to restaurant-worthy gourmet. Here is the winning recipe, for a dish called shuizhurou 水煮肉, or boiled beef.
Boiled beef is a classic in Sichuan cuisine. An aromatic mix of spicy bean sauce, star anise, and numbing peppercorns, it is far from the bland dish that its name might suggest.
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