Before I started blogging, I thought I had a fair knowledge of my own cuisine ie Konkani cuisine or 'amchi' cooking. The upkaris,ghasshis, ambats, ummans, pathrodoes, etc . But slowly realisation dawned on me, that I know just a small part of it. Ofcourse I knew that the cuisine has got its own regional variations -even within Kerala where I grew up, I have seen two or 3 versions of the same dish. However I was pleasantly surprised to see the write up about teppal in Shilpas blog and also RedChillies and came to know that it is a staple in Mangalorean Konkani cuisine and also Saraswat cuisine. Well, thats not all. It is also a common ingredient in Chinese Cooking and is also known as Sichuan Pepper.
Anyway,my neighbour as well as friend C gave me this and ofcourse apart from trying out few amchi dishes, I used it for making 5 spice powder. The Chinese Five Spice mix has cinnamon,cloves, fennel and star anise apart from the above mentioned Sichuan Pepper.It is supposed to have all the five flavours of sweet,sour,bitter,pungent and salty. I have adapted the recipe seen here to make my 5spice powder.
Sichuan Pepper: 2 tsp
Star Anise : 8 Pods
Cinnamon: 1 tbsp powdered
Cloves: 1/2 tsp powdered
Fennel Seeds: 1 tbsp powdered
Dry roast the sichuan peppercorn, over low to medium heat, in a skillet shaking it periodically to roast uniformly, until the aroma is released.
Grind/powder this with star anise in a pepper mill/blender.
Strain the powder and blend with cloves,cinnamon and fennel seed powders to obtain a finer mix. I didnot strain it and hence mine is a bit coarse.
Store in an airtight container and use as per the recipe says.
A little bit goes a long way and so use sparingly.
I am planning few uses for my 5spice powder. Lets see how they turn out.