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Get your hands on Marion’s LATEST cookbook, Just As Delicious. Order Now
Get your hands on Marion’s LATEST cookbook, Just As Delicious. Order Now

Get your hands on Marion’s LATEST cookbook, Just As Delicious. Order Now

How to: Ultimate Chinese Five Spice

Make yourself a batch of this homemade Chinese five spice – so much more fragrant than the store-bought version! To get the best flavour from this dried spice combo, try and use it within a year.

PREP TIME
5 minutes
COOK TIME
10 minutes
SERVES
Makes about 1/4 cup
Ingredients

7 whole star anise

1 stick cinnamon, broken into small pieces

12 whole cloves

1 tbsp whole fennel seeds

1 tbsp whole Sichuan peppercorns

Steps
  • Step 1

    Place the star anise, cinnamon and cloves in a dry frying pan over medium-high heat and cook, stirring and shaking the pan, for 4-5 minutes or until fragrant and just starting to smoke. Remove from heat and transfer the spices to a plate or bowl and allow to cool. Now do the same process with the fennel seeds and Sichuan peppercorns but these will only take 2-3 minutes.

  • Step 2

    Use a coffee or spice grinder to grind to a fine powder. Sieve to remove any larger pieces of spices and simply remove them with a spoon. Store in an airtight container.

What is Chinese 5 spice made up of?

Chinese 5 spice is an ingredient seen often in Chinese recipes. But what exactly IS Chinese 5 spice? 5 spice is a combination of cinnamon, star anise, fennel seeds and cloves – the 5th ingredient can vary across recipes, we use sichuan peppercorns. But ginger and white pepper are also commonly used as the fifth component.

What can I substitute for Chinese 5 spice powder?

Whilst you’re never going to get the classic flavour that Chinese 5 spice provides with a substitute, there are some seasonings that come pretty close. Star anise, allspice, garam masala, sichuan peppercorns and cinnamon sticks are all worthy replacements – but the real stuff is always best!

Is Chinese 5 spice like allspice?

Whilst Chinese 5 spice and allspice might seem pretty similar at first glance – there is one VERY big difference. Chinese 5 spice is a combination of 5 different spices, whereas allspice is a single spice, made up of dried fruit from the Pimenta diocia plant.

Marion's Kitchen is for everyone who finds joy in flavour and happiness in every bite. Marion's Kitchen is for everyone who finds joy in flavour and happiness in every bite.

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