1 tsp whole Sichuan peppercorns
200g (7 oz) dried wheat noodles or spaghetti or fresh noodles
2 tbsp vegetable oil
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tbsp finely chopped fresh ginger
1 small onion, cut into thin wedges
8 dried chillies, roughly chopped
1 small red or green capsicum, deseeded, diced
500g (1 lb) peeled and deveined prawns, tails intact
2 spring onions (scallions), sliced
2 tbsp roughly chopped roasted peanuts
1/2 cup chicken stock
¼ cup light soy sauce
1 tbsp Chinkiang vinegar
1 tbsp caster sugar
2 tsp dark soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp corn flour (cornstarch)
Toast the Sichuan peppercorns in a dry frying pan over high heat. When fragrant, use a mortar and pestle to grind to a fine powder.
Cook the noodles or pasta in a large saucepan of water following packet directions or until al dente. Drain and set aside.
Meanwhile, combine the ingredients for the sauce in a small jug. Set aside.
Heat the oil in a wok or large frying pan over high heat. Add the garlic, ginger and onion and stir-fry for 2 minutes or until starting to brown. Add the dried chillies. Then add the capsicum and stir-fry for a further 2 minutes. Add the prawns and stir-fry until nearly cooked.
Add the sauce and the cooked noodles or pasta. Use tongs to toss to combine. Toss through the spring onion and the ground Sichuan pepper.
Top with peanuts and serve.