Thursday, February 2, 2012


(It has Vege and Vegan option)
Here I am, after a long time minus travelogue. During my Sahara days, one thing I have realized, that Chinese food is  quite diverse as ours 
It was a great experience eating Chinese food covering many regions but predominently Cantonese, Beijing and fusion Sichuan (Sczchuan) dishes. It was difficult to learn all dishes because of language, ingredients unknown to me and  time. Friday after noon was the only free time in a week, and I could spend some time in the kitchen with a can of beer. The ancient sign language was a great help, like drawing a hen,  a duck or a turkey to understand the bird being used for cooking . ( The turkey I drew was replied with a sketch of a donkey by the chef to know , if I meant donkey meat and vehemently denying that a  donkey was not in edible list of animals, I need to increase drawing skills to learn recipes, engineering drawing no problem).    
Coming back, I am giving here a very simple fusion recipe of Sichuan origin. The Sichuan recipe is famous for fire-hot (The Chinese fire-hot is no patch on our real hot recipes). As most chinese friends do not belong to Sichuan region , they did not have much appreciation for firy hot food. The Chef made it a  point to cook less hot Sichuan dishes once in a while. 
The Sichuan dishes have lot of red chili , ginger, garlic and the famous flower pepper ( HUA JIAO) and of course Soya sauce, Chinese vinegar, rice wine at your discretion. 
HUA JIAO . I am sure , most of you know what it is. It is a small fruit , dried and have a distinct fragrance ( Not known to Indo-Chinese food eaters) and has a numbing effect in  mouth but makes you feel its fire at your throat. ( The so called fire at the throat is no patch on the fire we get if we chew few Indian black pepper , so relax) . The fragrance is very distinct , specially when combined with star anise.
THE RECIPE . Here I am giving a simple Mutton fry  with Hua Jiao, dry red chili and star anise  seasoning. You can make Tofu fry also.

For Boiling 
Mutton Chap   500 gms ( You can take few ribs too, with a layer of fat)
Hua Jiao 1 tsp 
star anise 1/2 
Red chilli 2 cut to pieces.
Ginger , 2 pieces ( 1 inch by 1/2 inch)
Garlic 4 cloves smashed
Vinegar 2 tsp
Green chili 2-3 ( optional) 
Salt to taste
Sugar 1 tsp
( MSG is added in all Chinese dishes, I did not have any )
For seasoning 
Red chili 6-8 cut to pieces
Star anise 1/2 
Hua Jiao 11/2 tsp
Julienne of ginger 1 tbsp
Chopped garlic 2 tsp
Oil for frying 

HUA JIAO ( SIchuan Pepper or Flower Pepper) 

Boil meat with above ingredients till tender. You can use a pressure cooker.
Take out the meat pieces and leave for draining water
Filter the water and use it as a clear soup. It may be quite hot so dilute with water. You can reserve the thick extract as a stock for future cooking.
Dip fry the boiled meat for 1 to 2 minutes and drain on paper napkin ( Dont worry, the meat will not absorb oil).
  Take 1 tbsp of leftover oil and when hot add ginger and garlic , saute for 2 minute at high heat and add red chili, star anise and Hua Jiao. 

Stir for few seconds and quench with 2 tbsp water. Reduce heat, add the fried meat , mix and dry off quickly.
The dish is ready. The flavor is awesome.

TOFU..One can use Tofu with this spicing. One variation is, dust Tofu pieces ( about 10 mm thick and 50 X 50 mm ) with corn flour and dip fry to light brown.
Boil the pieces as above and finish with the seasoning. You may not fry the tofu, simply boil with the mix and then give seasoning. You may eliminate the garlic to make it a perfect Vege dish.
You can use Light Soya during Boiling or in the seasoning for meat or vege dishes.
I feel sad that I will be again out of kitchen and blog for some time. But will meet you at FB. 


Aarthi said...

They look yummy


vineetha said...

Enjoyed reading ur post...Huo jiao sounds hot, looks mouthwatering !!!

Santosh Bangar said...

nice post.. dish is looking differentbut sounds delicious

sangeeta said...

Are these called Shcezuan pepper corns? Like the spicing in the fried mutton chaamps.
The turkey and onkey must have bean a hilarious incident.

Biny Anoop said...

wow dat sounds great...jiao is dat african chilli i wonder

The knife said...

great to see a post from you after so long ghosh kaku...and i actually have the ingredients at home...I had a sichuan lamb at china town singapore and tried to recreate thanks to you have the recipe too...the end result is similar to the junglee maas of rajasthan...and you are right...chinese 'hot' is no comparison to our hot

Gauri Gharpure said...

Very tempting indeed!

Hamaree Rasoi said...

Wonderful to know about your sign language experience with the Chinese Chef. I could well imagine how hilarious it must have been. Hua Jiao looks simply delicious and mouthwatering.

Hamaree Rasoi

Home Cooked Oriya Food said...

glad to see you here after a long time... I don't know what jiao huo is - but sounds exotic...
Happy traveling...

saffronstreaks said...

schechuan peppers ? do u get these in Delhi? schechuan is my fav chinese cuisine, and I cant wait to try these out, will let u know soon.
loved reading thru your experiences.

Priya said...

MOuthwatering here, delicious and inviting lamb chops,never tried those peppers yet in my cooking.

Jay said...

wow...looks super yummmy...very inviting dish..;)
Tasty Appetite

Arti said...

Thanks for the vegetarian version!
And LOL about the donkey sketch, so much for the sign language!!
Good the see you back after a long time Ushnish da, even I was off blogging for the last few weeks with only guest posts being published there.
Missed your comments!
Have a fabulous weekend:)

Purabi Naha said...

wow, what a mouth-watering preparation! perfect for weekends when you want to cook something special!

Purabi Naha said...

And glad that you are back. I really trust your recipes so much! Each one is unique!!

Shri said...

Was waiting for this post! I hope the hua jiao finds use in many ways!

Zareena said...

Great to see you after so long. This recipe look yummm... will try this next time when I get lamb chops.

Kanchan said...

its been ages that I had these .. looks yummy :)

Shobha said...

Interesting !
I have never heard of these flower pepper.
Nice to see a recipe in your blog after a long gap..let me try to see if I can find these flowers here in Brazil. said...

Hi Ushinishda, as usual enjoyed reading ur post..nice spicy mutton chops..mutton is fav meat, after reading the recipe, now i'm hungry..wish to taste that rite now..he he :)

khushi said...

Hi uncle.....grt too see u after a long time!! Hope everything is good at your end.....even I dnt get time to come to the blog now a days....keep posting

Jaya said...

I think I haven't seen anything similar till now..and the turkey /donkey drawings must have been a kind of experience:-)..even my hubby had a similar incident in can really imagine the scene there..and about this recipe, it sure looks so delicious, if I can get some hua jiao ..I am not sure if I can find hua jiao here.regards

maha said...

wonderful recipe..looks great........nice space vth yummy recipes

ইন্দিরা মুখার্জি said...

looks very apettizing! but how do i get the special mirchi???

Ushnish Ghosh said...

Dear Indira
I am not sure from where to get it. I shall carry one packet for you when I come to India in April and courier it from Noida!
But any way you are not missing much without this spice...only thing is it has a very distinct aroma but tastes like our pepper.

Carole said...

Here is a dish I made using leftover lamb in a salad

Shobha said...

Hi Ushnish,
Been a long time..
I have tagged you in a game.
Visit my other blog to get the questions.
Hope u'll enjoy !
Warm regards

savitha ramesh said...

Looks great.lamb chops i very inviting.

halal foodie said...

looks delicious, v yummy

saffronstreaks said...

kaku .. I tagged you with 7*7 award . its on my post on orange muffin.
looking fwd to ur link fest

Arti said...

Where are you Ushnish Da? No post! Miss your wonderful posts and motivational words at my blog.
Come back soon from your hibernation.

Jay said...

thanks for your inspiring feedback in my space Ji...
hope you're having a great time..:)
Tasty Appetite

Akila said...

Hi y now a days not in blogging ? When u get time visit my place