Buy Szechuan Pepper! Szechuan pepper is very popular in Asian cuisine and most notably in hot or spicy dishes, where it is often combined with chili pepper and causes a slight numbing effect. This numbing allows people to tolerate the potency of the chili peppers. Surprisingly not related to black pepper or chili pepper, Szechuan pepper is harvested from evergreens (Zanthoxylum piperitum, Z.simulans, and Z.schinifolium) in China and other Asian countries. These evergreens are more closely related to citrus trees, which may explain the slight lemon flavor associated with Szechuan pepper.
Suggestions: When you Buy Szechuan Pepper, try some recipes; many often suggest lightly toasting the tiny seed pods, then crushing them before adding them to food. Only the husks are used; the shiny black seeds are discarded or ignored as they have a very gritty sand-like texture. The spice is generally added at the last moment. Works well in just about anything you enjoy with a kick: soups, sauces, meats, fish, seafood, and vegetables. This is also great to season Duck Breast with.