This is a dish inspired by our visit to a Tibetan retreat near Beijing, China. So it is typical of that climate with dried red chillies instead of the common fresh chillies you often see in Chinese recipes. To say that I am addicted to this dish would be an understatement but this is not for those who do not like hot & spicy food! Lotus root seems to be perfect at absorbing all the flavours and the Szechuan peppercorns add a great tingle in your mouth which makes me want more! As fresh lotus root is not readily available in my part of the world, I have used tinned or frozen in this recipe but fresh lotus root can be used in the same way. I hope you try it out and do let me know what you think 🙂
Serves 2 – 3
What you need:
- 400g tinned/frozen sliced lotus root
- 1 green bell pepper/capsicum
- 3 spring onions
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 2 – 4 dried red chillies
- 1 teaspoon red chilli flakes
- 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
- 1/2 teaspoon ground szechuan peppercorns (I just use a pestle & mortar)
- 2 tablespoons groundnut oil (or vegetable oil)
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon of toasted sesame seeds
- Salt to taste
How to make it:
- Pour the oil into a wok/large pan along with the dried chillies. Gently heat on a low flame for about 5 mins – the idea is so that the red chillies infuse into the oil. Be careful not to burn the chillies!
- Meanwhile slice the spring onions and put just the white parts in the infused oil. Stir fry for a minute and then turn up the flame a little.
- Add the ginger, garlic, green bell pepper and black pepper corns and stir fry for another minute.
- Add lotus root fry, red chilli flakes & salt and mix in with the other ingredients. Stiry fry for about 3 – 5 minutes until the lotus root is cooked through.
- Taste and adjust seasoning accordingly. I sometimes add more red chilli flakes if I want it to be more fiery 🙂 But be careful not to add too much red chilli as you need to now add the ground szechuan peppercorns which will have a great tangy & fiery sensation.
- After you add the szechuan peppercorns , turn off the flame and add the sesame oil and mix well. Then add the sliced green parts of the spring onion and the toasted sesame seeds for garnish.
- I think this is best with hot white jasmine rice or quinoa, but you can serve with other rice or noodles if you prefer.
Your dinner guests will be wowwwwed and this hot & flavourful dish will be a sure hit! Try this Thai green curry as an additional side dish.