Condimantra Cardamom Spices
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Cardamom

Condimantra Cardamom Spices

The spicy pods (Cardamom) contain many essential volatile oils that include pinene, sabinene, myrcene, phellandrene, limonene, 1, 8-cineole, terpinene, p-cymene, terpinolene, linalool, linalyl acetate, terpinen-4-oil, a-terpineol, a-terpineol acetate, citronellol, nerol, geraniol, methyl eugenol, and trans-nerolidol

  1. As one of the world’s most ancient spices, the history of cardamom is long, dating back at least 4000 years
  2. Cardamom is mentioned in Sanskrit texts of the 4th century BC in a treatise on politics called Kautilya’s Arthashasthra and in Taitirriya Samhita where it is used in offerings
  3. Cardamom´s role in economic transactions e.g. trade was first reported around the eighth century A.D., and is native to India. It was imported into Europe around A.D. 1214
  4. Ancient Greek and Roman merchants obtained cardamom from southern India and Sri Lanka, and used it extensively in cookery and perfumes
  5. A thousand or so years ago, travelling Vikings discovered it whilst on their travels in Constantinople and on the caravan routes. And they introduced it to Scandinavia where it remains popular
  6. During the 19th century, plantations of cardamom were set up by British colonists and this is where much of the green and black cardamom that we use still comes from today

Latin Name: Elettaria Cardamomum

Other Names: Capalaga, Ilachi, Green Cardamom, True Cardamom, Ceylon Cardamom

Facts

  1. Cardamom is a spice that comes from the seeds of a plant in the ginger family. It is native to Southern India and also grown in Guatemala, which is the largest producer and exporter of this spice in the world
  2. Cardamom plants grow wild in parts of the monsoon forests of the Western Ghats in southern India. This area has become known as the Cardamom Hills
  3. There were originally three varieties of cardamom. Of the two remaining genera of the ginger family, green cardamom (Elettaria cardamomum), also known as true cardamom, is popular from India to Malaysia. The other, Amomum, is mainly used in Asia and Australia, and is also commonly known as black, brown, Java, Bengal, Siamese, white, or red cardamom

Health benefits:

  1. Cardamom is a rich source of anti-oxidants
  2. The therapeutic properties of cardamom oil have been found application in many traditional medicines as antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, digestive, diuretic, expectorant, stimulant, stomachic and tonic
  3. The pods are also rich in many vital vitamins, including riboflavin, niacin, vitamin-C
  4.  Cardamom is a good source of minerals like potassium, calcium, magnesium and iron

Common uses in Indian cuisine:

  1. Cardamom can be used in both sweet and/or savoury dishes
  2. Elettaria, or green cardamom, is combined with condensed milk and sugar to make sweets collectively referred to as mithai (e.g. kulfi, kheer etc.)
  3. Green cardamom is used to flavour coffee and teas, most notably Masala chai
  4. It is also commonly used to flavour meats, poultry, seafood, vegetable dishes, soups and sauces
  5. In contrast, Amomum, or black cardamom, imparts a slightly mint-like flavour and is an ingredient in garam masala, a seasoning blend used to flavour curries and rice dishes

 


Sources

 

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