Updated: Feb 16, 2019
This special berry (also called Batak berries) comes from the northern regions of Sumatra in Indonesia. Andaliman pepper is a fake pepper.
The berries come from a thorny shrub from Indonesia with the botanical name of Zanthoxylum acanthopodium.
It is a member of the family Rutaceae and the genus Zanthoxylum, the same as for Wakayama's Sansho Bay, Wild Mountain Bay, Sichuan Pepper or Timut Pepper.
These berries grow in the wild and are not cultivable; it is a very rare plant, reminiscent of Sichuan pepper with a hint of Cubèb pepper. Also like Sichuan Pepper it is a fake pepper.
The best terroir for growing this spice are located near Lake Toba, one of the largest volcanic lakes on the planet.
The perfume is comparable to that of Sichuan pepper, with notes of citrus (mandarin, lime) much more intense.
Its anaesthetic properties, more subtle than those of its Sichuan’s relative, reduces the burning sensation that hot peppers can cause.
It can be added whole in sauces and simmered dishes, or combined with spices such as galangal, ginger, chilli, turmeric and garlic, and is really good with chicken, red meat and fish.