Sechuan Buttons

Try this hip, diverse ingredient in cocktails or on ice cream called Sechuan!

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Sechuan Buttons

Try this hip diverse ingredient in cocktails or on ice cream!

-Francine Segan, food+home editor

Sechuan ButtonAn amazing new ingredient – Sechuan Buttons – introduced into the States by the Koppert Cress Company, is all the rage in top restaurants across the country.

Sechuan Buttons are tiny little yellow plant buds that are sort of like herbal Pop Rocks. A tiny nibble generates a wild tingling sensation on your tongue, like champagne bubbles. Then the sensation intensifies and feels almost electric. They’re amazing, and have won many awards including the Innovation Award of the StarChefs Congress in 2008 in NYC. Esquire Magazine dubbed them the “cooking ingredient of the year.”

Cutting-edge chefs are using Sechuan Buttons crumbled into dressings, served with raw fish dishes, or added to sorbet and ice cream. They are a fabulous palate cleanser and are also great in cocktails.

Here are three of my favorite cocktails courtesy of Junior Merino, “The Liquid Chef.”

THRILLING BASIL CACHACA

THRILLING BASIL CACHACA ?

– Muddle 3 SECHUAN BUTTONS in a cocktail glass
– Add ½ oz of litchi puree
– Pour ½ oz of Elderflower Liqueur
– Pour 1½ oz of Cachaça
– Add ¾ oz of fresh lime juice
– Pour ¼ oz of simple syrup (2 parts of sugar for 1 part of water)
– Cut 2 sprigs of BASIL CRESS
– Ground them in the glass
– Add a lot of ice
– Shake it in a cocktail shaker
– Double strain
– Pour in a glass with ice
– Add 2 BASIL CRESS and some SECHUAN BUTTONS for decoration

GIN SHOCKTAIL

GIN SHOCKTAIL

– Muddle 3 SECHUAN BUTTONS in a cocktail glass
– Pour in 1¾ Gin
– Add ¼ oz of simple syrup
– Add ¾ oz of fresh pink grapefruit juice
– Pour 1/8 oz of lime juice
– Add a lot of ice
– Shake it in a cocktail shaker
– Double strain
– Pour in a coupe of champagne with ice or one ice cube
– Add 1½ oz of champagne
– Use peel of orange, SECHUAN BUTTON and PURPLE SHISO for decoration

9-VOLT CITRUS TEQUILA

9-VOLT CITRUS TEQUILA

– Muddle 1/8 of Asian Pear and 3 SECHUAN BUTTONS in a cocktail glass
– Add ¼ oz of simple syrup
– Pour ½ oz of fresh lime juice
– Add 1½ oz of Tequila Blanco
– Add ½ oz of Orange Liqueur
– Add a lot of ice
– Shake it in a cocktail shaker
– Double strain
– Pour in a glass with ice
– Garnish with a slice of lime, a sprig of LIMON CRESS and a SECHUAN.

Photos Courtesy: Kopppert Cress


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