CCHH: China Centre For Health And Humanity


Hot and Numb! 2000 years of Sichuan pepper

5 June 2015

Saturday 13th June, 12.

Spice Exchange map 00 midday, The Spice Exchange, Kew Gardens. As part of the Kew Full of Spice Festival 2015, Vivienne Lo (UCL CCHH) will give a presentation on the history of Sichuan pepper, its medical and culinary uses.

Kew Full of Spice Festival/ Spicy Saturday: http://www.kew.org/visit-kew-gardens/whats-on/spicy-Saturdays

Saturday 13th June, 12.00

Hot and Numb! Two thousand years of Sichuan pepper

Today the characteristic flavour of Hunan and Sichuan cuisine is that of the chilli pepper. But chilli did not arrive in China until around the sixteenth century, after it had been discovered by Europeans in South America. Before that time, the peppers native to China, most notably varieties of zanthoxylum, commonly known as Sichuan pepper, imparted a very distinctive flavour that is often used nowadays in conjunction with chilli. Sichuan pepper stimulates the famous ma 麻 'numbing' effect on the tongue. During this presentation, Dr Vivienne Lo will reflect on 2000 years of Sichuan pepper, its medical and culinary uses. She will also share some great recipes.

The afternoon's programme continues with music from pipa lute virtuoso Cheng Yu and a talk by ethnobotanist/TV presenter James Wong.

Further details here:

Venue: The Spice Exchange pavilion, outside the north end of the Princess of Wales Conservatory, Kew Gardens

Interactive visitors' map: