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Kung Pao chicken - Dim sum

The Hirshon Sichuan Chili Oil – 四川辣油

  • Total Time: 0 hours


Units Scale
  • 2 cups peanut, sunflower oil, or another “high smoke point” oil
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil (香油) (Kadoya brand strongly preferred)
  • 3-inch length fresh ginger, thinly sliced
  • 5 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup Sichuan peppercorns (花椒)
  • 2 tablespoons cloves (丁香)
  • 1 large piece of cassia bark (桂皮) (23 inches)
  • 4 whole star anise pods (八角)
  • 2 black cardamom (草果)
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • Peel (zest only, no white part) of one tangerine (preferred) or 1/2 a navel orange
  • 15 dried whole red facing heaven pepper (Capsicum annuum var. conoides; Chinese name: 朝天椒; pinyin: cháotiānjiāo, also known as 指天椒; pinyin: zhǐtiānjiāo meaning ‘skyward-pointing chili pepper’), which is a cone-shaped, medium-hot chili pepper or 30 Chiles de Arbol
  • 23 small/medium pieces of purple gromwell (紫草)
  • 1/3 cup dried red chili flakes
  • 1/2 cup Chinese fermented black beans (douchi), (豆豉) roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons Sichuan peppercorns, slightly crushed (optional)


  1. Prepare your jar. Have a sterilized glass jar and lid ready to store the finished chili oil.
  2. Flavor the oil. Combine all ingredients except for the dried red chili flakes, Chinese fermented black beans and the second listing of Sichuan peppercorns in a heavy-bottomed saucepan.
  3. Slowly raise the heat until the oil starts to bubble. Sustain a very gentle simmer for 20-25 minutes, ensuring the oil doesn’t boil too vigorously. Press down on the solids periodically, especially the purple gromwell so it releases its red color into the oil.
  4. Strain the oil. I pour the entire contents of my still hot saucepan into a French press and let the spices steep for an additional 5 minutes or so. Use whatever you have on hand to strain the solids from the oil if you don’t have a French press.
  5. Finishing the oil. Place the red chili flakes, black beans and additional Sichuan peppercorns in your sterilized jar. Pour the strained oil into the jar. Use a spoon to press the spices to extract as much oil as possible. I like to add a few pieces of the strained ginger and orange peel to the jar as well for extra flavor. Seal the jar and let stand for about a week before using. You can use it right away, of course but I like the chili flakes and black beans to season and truly absorb the complex flavors of the chili oil.
  • Prep Time: 0 hours
  • Cook Time: 0 hours
  • Category: Recipes


  • Calories: 1252.65 kcal
  • Sugar: 13.7 g
  • Sodium: 1309.68 mg
  • Fat: 120.94 g
  • Saturated Fat: 10.14 g
  • Trans Fat: 0.44 g
  • Carbohydrates: 45.08 g
  • Fiber: 15.18 g
  • Protein: 10.39 g
  • Cholesterol: 0.0 mg