Black pepper ---- Milaku

Black pepper is a flowering vine in the family Piperaceae, cultivated for its fruit, which is usually dried and used as a spice and seasoning. The fruit, known as a peppercorn

Black peppers are native to India and are extensively cultivated there and elsewhere in tropical regions. Currently Vietnam is by far the world's largest producer

After the Middle Ages, virtually all of the black pepper found in Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa was from India's Malabar region.

black pepper often referred as “king of spice”

Several color peppercorns found in the markets like white peper,green pepper,orange pepper , are nothing but the same fruit, which picked up from the plant at different stages of maturity and subject to different methods of processing.

Black peppers have strong spicy taste that comes to them from volatile oils such as piperine.

Cubeb or tailed pepper berries (val milaku) are dried unripe fruits of piper cubeba vine that is grown mainly Indonesian rain forest.

Medicinal uses

Peppers have been used therapeutically in dentistry as an antiseptic for tooth-decay and gum swellings.

Peppercorns are also being used in traditional medicines in treating flatulence and indigestion in traditional medicine, but there is little or no data to support these claims in modern medicine.

Health benefits

Peppers have been in use since ancient times for its anti-inflammatory, carminative, anti-flatulent properties.

pepper may increase the motility of the gastro-intestinal tract as well as increase the digestion power by increasing gastro-intestinal enzyme secretions.

It has also been found that piperine can increase absorption of selenium, B-complex vitamins, beta-carotene, as well as other nutrients in the food.

Black peppercorns contain good amount of minerals like potassium, calcium, zinc, manganese, iron, and magnesium.

Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps controlling heart rate and blood pressure.

Manganese is used by the body as a co-factor for the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase. Iron is essential for cellular respiration and blood cell production.

They are also excellent source of many vital B-complex groups of vitamins such as Pyridoxine, riboflavin, thiamin and niacin.

Peppercorns are rich source of many anti-oxidant vitamins such as vitamin-C and vitamin-A.

They also rich in flavonoid polyphenolic anti-oxidants like carotenes, cryptoxanthin, zea-xanthin and lycopene. These compounds help body remove harmful free radicals and help protect from cancers and diseases.

Culinary uses

Black pepper is one of the most versatile spices used in virtually in all savory cooking.

It is used liberally in Indian vegetarian and chicken curries. In the Middle-East, this pepper is used in meat and rice dishes.

For seasoning and for marinate chicken ,fish and meat

this spice is also used in sweet preparations like fruitcakes, breads, pies to add spicy note.

pepper and salt mixture is used as sprinkle over vegetable/fruit salads, chats, lemonades, in soups etc.

Lassi (churned yoghurt) is often flavored with this spice-salt mixture in Punjab province.

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