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Otherwise known as pippali, Bengal pepper, and Indonesian pepper, long pepper has a rich history dating back many years. It was first mentioned in the ancient Indian Ayurveda texts where it was lauded for its medicinal purposes. In the Greek and Roman eras, long pepper was expensive and prized, however, with the discovery of the New World and chili peppers, it lost its glory.
Now, it's commonly found in Ethiopian and North African cuisines. Trade routes through Africa allowed for easy access to this unique spice and it's found its way into traditional blends like ras el hanout and in Ethiopian stews.
The unique pinecone structure acts as an envelope holding many small peppercorns. They have musty notes of clove, nutmeg, pine, and sometimes vanilla, but also the familiar heat of peppercorn. You can easily use a Microplane to grate them over food before serving - similar to nutmeg.
Native to South Asia. Cultivated in India, but also Nepal, Sri Lanka, Timor, Indonesia, and the Philippines.
Long pepper grows on a flowering vine of the Piperaceae family. They are harvested at their peak pungency, which is about 6 months after planting in the spring. After picked, they're dried in the sun for 4 to 5 days.
1. Stir ground long pepper into equal amounts of peanut butter and coconut milk and add limes juice and soy sauce for a quick satay sauce.
2. Season shaved raw Brussels sprouts with ground long pepper, olive oil, lime, and salt and serve as a salad.
3. For a spiced milkshake, add ground long pepper to vanilla ice cream, milk, and unsweetened shredded coconut before blending
Fresh strawberries • Curried chicken salad • Fried oysters • Green curry • Chocolate ice cream • Fried rice • Pickling brine
Season a striped bass fillet with this blend before roasting in the oven with chopped fresh shallots and garlic. It also gives a peppery bite to crepe batter.
Makes about 1/4 cup or 24 grams
18 pieces (15 grams) whole long peppers, ground
1/4 cup (5 grams) hibiscus blossoms, ground
1/2 tablespoon (3 grams) ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon (1 gram) ground lemongrass
5 dried makrut lime leaves, ground