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Maple Glazed Salmon with Szechuan Pepper
  • Szechuan Pepper is also known as: Sichuan Pepper, Chinese Pepper, Japanese Pepper, Chinese Prickly Ash, Fagara, Sansho, Timur or Indonesian Lemon Pepper
  • Origin and cultivation: the outer pod of a small fruit that has no relation to black pepper; in the citrus family but in a distinct genus from other citrus fruits such as oranges and limes
  • Availability: year-round at stores that sell specialty spices
  • Appearance: powdered, or in whole form like little red-black split pods
  • Flavor: an intense numbing heat that is a distinct chemical from black pepper, hot peppers, mustard, horseradish and wasabi; generally added to food after it is cooked to maximize the flavor and numbing power
  • Trivia: banned by the U.S. FDA until 2005 because imported peppercorns could carry citrus canker disease, which threatens citrus trees. The ban was lifted, provided the imported peppercorns are treated with heat that kills the disease causing bacteria

2 salmon filets, 1 inch thick
1/4 cup of maple syrup
1 clove garlic, minced
Juice of a 1/4 lemon
1/2 teaspoon of olive oil
1 teaspoon of ground black pepper
1 teaspoon of Szechuan pepper, coarsely ground
1/4 teaspoon of salt

••••••••

Preheat your broiler.

Mix syrup, lemon juice, garlic, salt and black pepper in a bowl. Dip the salmon in the bowl coating it well.

Put some aluminum foil in your broiling pan and grease with olive oil. Put the salmon filets on the foil skin side down and brush on any remaining syrup mixture.

Broil for 8 to 10 minutes on the second to lowest rack until flaky and done. If the fish is thicker than an inch and still not done after 12 minutes, turn off the broiler and let sit in the leftover heat for 5 more minutes. If you leave the broiler on longer than 12 minutes the syrup mixture might start burning.

Remove the fish and dust with the ground Szechuan pepper.

Serves 2.

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