Most websites that sell them say to remove them before serving. Why?
You can eat them if you want, but I think they're generally regarded as something to be discarded after cooking, like a bay leaf. Restaurants leave them in for show, but usually they're not consumed.
I have a favorite Kung pao chicken recipe that says to discard them if they char, but I kind of like them that way. Also, I inlcude them in the finished dish so I can just pluck one out and nibble on it for more heat.
I leave them in my Kung pao. It's not hot enough unless I eat them. At least some of them.
Ping An Mien, a Chinese Family Noodle Story
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