Also known as Balinese or Bengal pepper, long pepper looks like a small thin catkin and can be grated or crushed. The long peppers have a beautiful sweet scent and a very hot, almost numbing heat that belies the innocent initial sweetness. Highly prized as far back as the Romans, long pepper has fallen into obscurity. Before the arrival of the chilli in India which was introduced by the Portuguese, long pepper was one of the main flavourings used to add heat to food but the cheaper chilli with better keeping qualities and being easier to grow spelt the end for long pepper producers. It is still used in small quantities in India both in cooking and medicines and is known in spice blends in North Africa. Apparently ancient ayurverdic teachings prize long pepper as being capable of increasing the semen in a man and thus his strength!
uses: Add crushed long pepper to a lamb stew or to season a spicy soup. Experiment by replacing black pepper with crushed or ground long pepper at the table or in your cooking, the musky sweet flavour seems to go really well with rich, creamy or buttery food in particular.
recipe kits: wattleseed pannacotta
try this: peppery salt pep pot