Black pepper (Piper nigrum) is a flowering vine produced for its fruit. It is grown in hot climates for 3-4 years when the buds start to develop. All the colors of peppercorns know derive from the same plant – black (cooked and dried unripe fruit), green (dried unripe fruit), or white (ripe fruit seeds), red (when the ripe fruit in soaked in wine). It is native to Kerala and it is evident in the use of this spice in the cuisine from there.
In Indian kitchen, Black Pepper is the only spice used both whole or freshly ground. The whole peppercorn will be a little difficult to eat as it is very strong in flavor but the ground version is extremely flavourful. It is used commonly in spice mixes like Garam Masala or Biryani Masala, bring that strong aroma to the dish. It is known to bring taste to any bland food and is one spice used across the globe.
It is best to store black pepper in an air tight container for increasing the longetivity. It is best to add the freshly ground pepper always to the food just before finishing the cookling, this way the aroma stays intact.
According to the Ayurveda, black pepper are the best aids to solve the problems of constipation, indigestion, tooth aches, tooth decay, diarrhea and joint pains. The pungent flavor of the seeds is the best treatment to relieve from the conjestion of nose and throat.
Recipe using Black Pepper – Peppery Chicken