Sichuan Pepper (Szechuan Peppercorn) comes from a thorny ash tree that looks like brown berries. It is a pepper-like dried husk spice used by the Chinese. People admire it because of its distinctive spicy-like taste, but it rather tastes mentholated with a light numbing effect. It is often used as an ingredient in fiery foods.
Some countries have a hard time finding Sichuan pepper, or its availability is low. Though Sichuan pepper is irreplaceable, there are some ingredients qualified to mimic Sichuan peppers. See below for some good substitutes
Substitute for Sichuan Peppercorns?
- Tasmanian Pepper – Its fragrant is what draws it closer to Sichuan pepper. Its floral to woody notes similarly depicts Sichuan pepper’s pine-like and lavender after taste. Australia is where you can find Tasmanian pepper locally but can only be hand-picked in Tasmania’s wilds. It is used chiefly in Australian burgers and in some bush meals and used to replace Sichuan peppers if there isn’t any.
- Grains of Paradise – A spice found on the west coasts of Africa and is closely related to the gingers. Grains of Paradise or also called Alligator pepper, is mainly used in North African cuisines. It can be an excellent substitute for Shichuan pepper because they both taste similar in their mild citrus-like after taste. Use twice the number of the required Sichuan pepper to imitate its fiery taste.
- Tellicherry Pepper – It is Thalassery (formerly Tellicherry) black peppercorns from India. Indians leave Tellicherry pepper on their vines for a more extended time to achieve a deeper, more aromatic flavor once harvested. Its distinct flavor is citrus-like with a light herbal taste, and it is frequently used as a substitute for Sichuan pepper.
- Black pepper and Coriander seeds – It is a suitable combination in imitating the flavor the Sichuan pepper provides. The freshness of both black pepper and coriander seeds is the main secret to achieve the same fiery flavor the Sichuan pepper has.