The modern generation has developed an inclination towards eating as well as cooking. They not only love to cook but are also interested in knowing the medicinal properties of the ingredient they are using for preparation. Here, we are going to talk about the special ingredient which is called the King of Spices. It is none other than pepper.
Particularly speaking about black pepper, it has its scientific name as piper nigrum and comes from the family of piperaceae which is cultivated for its fruit, known as peppercorn. These peppercorns are dried and used as spice or seasonings. When the fruit is fully matured, it becomes 5mm in diameter and turns dark red which contains a single seed in it.
This fruit is native to present-day South India and extensively cultivated in tropical areas where the soil is neither too dry nor susceptible to flood and grows up to 4 metres in height on supporting a tree or pole. Wild pepper grows in the western ghats of India.
Pepper is spicy due to its chemical compound peperine. Pepper also has a medicinal property which is used to treat various ailments like constipation, insomnia, oral abscesses, sunburn, toothache. Pepper contains piperine which irritates the nostril and causes sneezing and it has the potential to increase absorption of vitamin B12, selenium. As a traditional medicine, it was used by the Buddhist monks.
Talking about its nutrients, 1 tablespoon or 6 grams of black pepper contains a moderate amount of Vit k , iron and other essential proteins and dietary fibres. It is anti-bacterial and antibiotic in nature due to immunity-boosting Vit c in it. In order to treat sore throat or cold, a home remedy is to crush few black peppers, mix them with honey and have it.
Pepper is spicy due to its chemical compound peperine. Pepper also has medicinal property which is used to treat various ailments like constipation, insomnia, oral abscesses, sunburn, toothache.Commonly there are 4 types of peppers which are used- black pepper, white pepper, green pepper and red peppercorns.
Black pepper is produced from a still-green, unripe drupe of the pepper plant. The pepper oil is received during the process of manufacturing dry powder is used as an ayurvedic massage oil and herbal beauty treatment.
Next on the list is white pepper which solely consists of the seed of the ripe fruit of the pepper plant with the thin darker-colored skin. It is accomplished by a process called retting. Ground white pepper is used mostly in Chinese, Portuguese and Thai cuisine.
Then comes green pepper which is made from unripe drupes. Dried green peppercorns are treated in a way that retains the green colour such as with sulphur dioxide , canning or freeze-drying. This spice is mostly used in Thai and Tamil cuisines.
Last on the list is red peppercorns which consist of ripe peppercorn drupes preserved in brine and vinegar. It can also be dried by using the colour preserving technique.