Chilli oil, Spring onion oil and Sichuan pepper oil, they are the three brothers of infused condiment family who have been serving the Chinese dining table for centuries with their faithful loyalty, nobility and speciality.
Chilli oil, the perfect marriage between chilli flakes and sizzling hot oil gives birth of this single portfolio and red face fellow. His down-to-earth characteristic gives you nothing but the purist and most sophistic tastes-the sautéing, deep, explosive, penetrative and addictive hot. He works on your lips, tongue, throat and brain makes a cold blooded person into a warm-hearted gentleman, even the Gods sweating. He is a true leader indeed, no matter whom he works with star anise, pepper, and cumin, you named them all, he always seals your dish with his ‘HOT’ stamp as capitalised as it is.
There is nothing better than sharing some of the tips to hot-up this guy.
- Choose thin skin chilli for your flakes, using a pair scissors to cut them and keep the seeds;
- Use a deep and flatter bottomed bowl to hold your flakes;
- Add a pinch of salt to the oil for a speedy and even cook;
- Make your judgement of oil temperature when the smoke of the oil is nearly gone and the salt at the bottom changes its colour into the same one as cooked oil that is the right timing. The precision of the time is something that your heart knows that your mind can’t explain which a thermometer can’t really help.
- Don’t make a large amount of chilli oil at one go and keep it in a cool and dry place but not in your fridge
The spring onion oil is a Ranger constantly on a move, even has no his own permanent bottle address. However, he is the guy who will be employed by your instinct for nearly every single Chinese dish. Add spring onion to hot oil, this either happens at the beginning of cooking known as tempering or at the end when hot oil is poured over splashed spring onions on a finished dish.
With his two-blade sword, he can instantly dig out the best flavours and cut off the negative nasty from the ingredients. His disciplinary command achieves a perfect harmonization among all the ingredients, and most of the time when a dish is accomplished; he turns himself invisible on your plate. In fact, we do owe a reward to him, but he said:”hot wok, warm oil and tasty spring onion please”.
The tiny Sichuan pepper, cooked in hot oil, creates the legendary musketeer-Sichuan pepper oil.
With his distinctive numbing character, he is a flavour accelerator in turbo power of his clever way. He brings out a single vegetable’s flavour to its highest level by way of contrasting it with his; enhances a cold dish with pungent kick to your taste buds, or even makes an ordinary noodle into a regional delicacy. He likes to work with the other spices, especially, his two brothers modestly and respectfully. But one thing he doesn’t like is that someone burns the Sichuan Pepper.
The three musketeers deserve our respect and honour. However, if you play with them, they will mess up your dish and upset your stomach in return.