A question about a recipe: Spicy Udon Noodles with Peppercorns, Mushrooms + Chinese Broccoli

I have a question about the recipe "Spicy Udon Noodles with Peppercorns, Mushrooms + Chinese Broccoli " from CarolineWright. just wondering if equivalent amount of chinese five spice could be used in palce of the peppercorns or should it jsut be omitted?

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3 Comments

trampledbygeese May 21, 2014
Great info Jan Weber.

adele93, You could probably substitute five spice if you can't find Szechuan, however, I wouldn't use equal amounts. It is going to make the flavour quite different than the original recipe - but that's not always a bad thing, in fact that's how so many great recipes come about. Personally, if I was making this, I would start with about 1/4 the amount of 5 spice, then add more to taste as it cooks. It may take considerably less or it may take considerably more than the peppercorns... but since the flavour profile is different between the two spices, it's best to sample it and add flavour as the dish cooks (after the chicken isn't raw anymore of course).

Speaking of substituting... that recipe looks great, pity I strongly detest mushrooms... but I do have extra cauliflower in the fridge... hmmm... I think I know what's for lunch.
 
trampledbygeese May 21, 2014
Sorry, can't edit. Don't know why I thought it was chicken.... although mine will be. Since you don't have any meat in it, you can taste the dish much sooner which will give you better control as to how much spice you need.
 
Jan W. May 21, 2014
Five spice powder will add a totally different flavor than Szechuan peppercorns, because they are just one of the 'five spices'. Szechuan Peppercorns are usually available at any Asian grocery - they are often sold as Chinese- or -Sichuan prickly ash, or just prickly ash. If you happen to be near a Japanese or Korean grocery, look for 'sansho' (Japanese), chopi-namu or sancho-namu (Korean). These are a related species which has a very similar flavor profile, and is usually sold as ground in a small container. If you can't get to an asian grocery or can't locate them, I would just use green peppercorns or (sparingly) a lemon pepper blend.
 
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