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Szechuan peppercorns

Szechuan peppercorns: Fragrant peppercorns native to Northern China. Why they were banned: The peppercorns were said to harbor a canker that could damage citrus plants. But in early 2004 the USDA decided that heat treating could render the canker harmless, and so heat-treated peppercorns are...

Bonnie Trafelet, Chicago Tribune