Saturday, January 6, 2007

Tellicherry peppercorn

You may have heard of Tellicherry Pepper from one of your favorite cooking shows. Or you may have just bought McCormick Tellicherry pepper from Costco.

Tellicherry is an old port town in Kerala and it was a major export hub for British East Indian Company to trade spices from South India. For centuries, europeans enjoyed the flavor of Tellicherry pepper in their gourmet meals.

What exactly is Tellicherry pepper? By definition, it is 10% of the largest and ripest of the peppercorn harvest from Malabar region. What makes Tellicherry pepper so special?

The tropical heat, monsoon rains, and iron-rich laterite soil creates the best growing environment for the pepper. Better location to receive extra sunlight, location of the fruit on the vine to get better nutrient and time a fruit gets to mature before harvest etc contributes to make bigger, better pepper. And chefs across the globe swear by its rich aromatic oil and flavor when they grind Tellicherry pepper into their platter.

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