December 12, 2019 at 10:30PM by CWC
Have you ever taken a bite of something and thought: “Now that’s a well-seasoned dish!” You certainly have, and as someone who knows a thing or two about flavor, Well+Good’s senior food editor Jessie Van Amburg recently got her first taste of a Japanese seasoning known as sansho powder.
Sansho powder is a close relative of Sichuan peppercorn. It comes from the green seedpods that grow on the Japanese prickly ash. The spice sparks a fiery numbness on the tongue, and its flavor is at once surprising and satisfying.
“I first tried sansho powder on a video shoot, and immediately fell in love with its taste,” says Van Amburg. “It starts off with a subtle citrusy flavor, but leaves behind a nice heat on the tongue that temporarily numbs your tongue—in a good way! Sansho powder is traditionally used in Japanese cuisine in sushi and noodle dishes, but I could see this also being a great way to spice up roasted vegetables or even to add some heat to scrambled eggs or omelettes.”
After researching some other ways to use the seedpod spice, I stumbled upon a vinaigrette that works like magic with grilled vegetables, a hot toddy recipe that looks about as cozy as a weighted blanket, and countless others. So grab some sansho powder (for $5 on Amazon) and start experimenting.
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