Black Pepper in India

By: Caroline Guzzardi

History in India

Black Pepper has been around for a very long time. It started back in India. On May 20th, 1498, an explorer from Portugal named Vasco de Gama reached India. Nobody thought it was possible, but he proved everybody wrong. When he got there he discovered pepper. The route to India was kept secret for a while. Black pepper was carried overland by Arab traders for the time being. The demand for pepper was so high, there could never be enough of it to go around. Today there is plenty of black pepper for everyone. Pepper in India really helped economic growth, and trading. The discovery of black pepper in India, was a major break through for the world.

Did you know...

That Black Pepper is one of the most popular spices in the world?
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This is what the black pepper looks when it is in berry form. From here they must be dried in the sun.

Where Pepper comes from

Pepper doesn't start out as a spice. It comes from a fruit called a perennial. The pepper starts out as a little green berry. The berries are picked from the vine and are put in the sun. After about 3 days of direct sunlight, the berries turn into small round dried up pieces. These pieces are the actual grain of pepper. From There, they can be used as they are, or can be crushed up into little grains that are usually put on top of food. For some people, it is almost impossible to think that the spice of black pepper starts out as a fruit.

Did You Know...

Black Pepper was treated like gold in the ancient times?
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Once the black pepper has dried out, it turns out to look like this. They look like round raisins from far, but the texture is hard.

Uses of Black Pepper

Pepper is used in almost every cuisine that is made today. It adds a flavor that is very spicy. All Indian foods use pepper to add flavor. Pepper is known of the king of Spices. Besides India, Pepper is used all over the world. It can be added on top of foods to add a little extra flavor, or it can be in the recipe. Many people only think pepper is used in food, but that is not the case. Many people used to use black pepper for medical purposes. It helps and speeds up the the digestive process. Black pepper can help stop colds and amnesia. Sometimes, it can be used on top of the skin to help with muscle pains. All around, pepper can be used for many different things, and is helpful for many people.

Bibliography

Pepper India: Directory about Indian Pepper http://www.pepperindia.com

Plant Cultures: Exploring Plants and People http://www.kew.org/plant-cultures/plants/black_pepper_traditional_medicine.html

Spices in India http://school.eb.com/comptons/article-208531