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Interesting things you should know about Cardamom

Updated: Feb 5, 2022

Here is a twenty interesting short points listed out for you, so that you have a better understanding about Cardamom - The Queen of Spices. Lets dive straight into it.



What is Cardamom?

Cardamom is the dried fruit which is otherwise called a pod, harvested from the Cardamom plant which is scientifically called Elettaria Cardamomum.


What is the colour of Cardamom?

Cardamom is green in colour, which is otherwise called small cardamom. There is a bigger variety bigger in size which is called Black Cardamom, mostly found in Nepal.


Where does Cardamom Grow?

Cardamom is a native of the Western Ghats of Southern India, mostly grown in the state of Kerala in India. Cardamom requires an elevation of 1600 feet and above and a temperature that falls between 19 to 25 degrees with ample rainfall. The plants require shade and that is why they are mostly grown along with tropical rainforests.


Which countries produce Green Cardamom?

Guatemala is the largest producer of Green Cardamom, however the best cardamom comes from India. Guatemala, India, Sri Lanka and Indonesia are producers of Cardamom.


Which country uses most Cardamom in the world?

Indian is the largest consumer of Cardamom in the world, mostly because of culinary reasons. Saudi Arabia consumes a lot of cardamom for the preparation of kahwa coffee. Scandinavians use cardamom in bakery and persians (Iran, Turkey, Iraq, Afghanistan) use it in their regular cuisine. Other countries use this exotic spices in very less volume, the usage could range from making wines to flavouring food and desserts.


What is Cardamom mostly used for?

Cardamom is used for culinary preparations, Bakery, extraction of oil for oleassence, perfumery and pharmaceuticals.


Why is Cardamom called the queen of spices?

Cardamom is is called the queen of spices primarily because it is an exotic spice, and it is an expensive spice that comes with a lot of important properties. It is the third most expensive spice after saffron and vanilla.


How is cardamom processed?

Cardamom is used as a whole spice in the form of a dried pod. The harvested cardamom pods undergoes a 24 hour slow drying process in a dried where the water content and the moisture is brought down to less than 10% which makes the pods reduce to one fifth of its original size.


What is the Structure of a Cardamom pod?

The cardamom pod when harvested has 85% of water, a husk and a bunch of seeds. When dried, the water is extracted by drying and the pod is reduced to its ribbed husk entirely sealing the black seeds inside. The seeds are black in colour, if they are brown, it means these pods were harvested even before getting ripe.


How do you assess the quality of a Cardamom pod?

Generally the diameter at the stomach of the pod is the criteria. They are known as 5 mm cardamom, 6mm, 7mm and 8mm, rarely you see 9mm as well. The 8 mm is considered to the best cardamom grade commercially. Moreover when you open the pod, the seeds should be back in colour and should easily come out of the husk when opened. The bigger the pod, the more seeds inside them.


What is the structure of a Cardamom plant?

The Cardamom plant is part of the giger family. They are a perennial cash crop and is a plant that grows upto 8 feet in height. They have long shoots, long leaves, and branches sprouting out of the roots bearing the cardamom fruit.


What are the attributes of Best quality Green Cardamom?

At BBS Spices Malabari, we ensure that the cardamom pods are graded and the 8 mm grade is exclusively prepared. The excessively ripe fruits might have their ends broken and the seeds partially popping out, which are removed from the batch. The Colour has to be Pale Green and not Yellow.


Where all do we have Cardamom cultivation in India?

Kerala contributes to 65% of the cardamom production in India. Apart from Kerala there are plantations in patches of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka states where there is a presence of the Western Ghats. The North East Indian states like Sikkim have growing percentage of Cardamom plantations, however best quality remains the one coming from Kerala.


Is Organic Cardamom available?

Organic Cardamom is a myth. It is possible to have organic cardamom, however it is not commercially viable. Organic Cardamom pods are relatively smaller and will have marks left by shoot borers (insects) and other micro insects which does not have a clean surface. Presently there are no certified organic cardamom available, if at all someone claims it to be organic, its certifications are to be verified.


What are the benefits of Cardamom?

Though everybody talks a lot of good things about cardamom, not much research be undergone about the Queen of Spices.


Cardamom pods are rich source of Antioxidants

  • These little pods are known to stabilize high blood pressure.

  • Anti inflammatory properties resists chronic diseases, and strengthens our immune system.

  • They instigate cancer fighting enzymes in human body.

  • Helps digestion and prevents ulcer.

  • They resist anxiety, helps in better breathing and resist lung congestion or asthma.

  • It is used as a mouth freshner and improves oral health.


What are the benefits of Cardamom?

As per an old Indian proverb, Anything and everything consumed excessively becomes poison.

  • Excess consumption of cardamom can develop skin related issues, mostly allergies and rashes.

  • Excessive usage of cardamom can lead to kidney stone (Gallstone), a condition where hard crystalline granules are formed in the gallbladder and its ducts.

  • Too much consumption of cardamom can lead to rise in body temperature.

  • Cardamom might not be safe when consumed with certain modern medicine drugs as it can lead to certain reactions - Consult your doctor to know more if you are under some medication.

Is green cardamom and black cardamom the same?

Both Green and black cardamom fall in the same family, but obviously they come with many differences.

  • Obviously Green Cardamom is Green in colour and Black Cardamom.

  • Green Cardamom is intense and strong, compared to Black Cardamom.

  • Black Cardamom is bigger and Green Cardamom is smaller in size.

  • Green Cardamom radiates strong aroma and flavour and goes well with preparing savoury and sweet dishes. Black Cardamom has a smoky flavour and is primarily used only in savouries, curries etc.

  • Small Cardamom primarily comes from Kerala, big cardamom primarily comes from Nepal.

Does Cardamom powder has the same effect of Cardamom pods?

Any spice that is grounded will slowly and steadily start losing its properties. The cardamom properties are primarily stored in the cardamom seeds which is naturally locked in its husk. When grounding, all of these properties are released from its store house. If you intent to ground, it is better to ground just before its application and not buy or ground cardamom and keep if for long, even if it is an airtight container.


Where can you buy good quality green cardamom online?

At BBS Spices Malabari, one of our core values is not to compromise on quality. Our access to the source of these cardamom pods without intermediaries give us the opportunity of sourcing and delivering the best quality cardamom pods. You can buy green cardamom from Amazon Marketplace (https://amazon.in/bbsspicesmalabari) or from our website https://www.spicesmalabari.com/shop


How to store green cardamom pods

  • Always try to buy the green cardamom pods which are packed within 6 months from the date of packing.

  • Once the packet is opened, store it in a airtight container, preferably a cool, dry, dark space in your kitchen.

  • Exposure to moisture or humidity will develop fungus over time.

  • Exposure to light or heat can take away the colour of the pods, essentially some of the properties start losing when the colour starts fading as the husk tends to open up.

How do know when the cardamom pod has become bad?

Cardamom pods lose its potency over time, generally it has a shelf life of almost a year if stored in a cool dry place. The husk turns its colour from green to yellow and eventually white, this means the cardamom is old and has been exposed to enough air and humidity. It must have already lost its properties and potency. Once gone bad, it would eventually become like roughage with no smell or effects of true cardamom.


How can you avail good quality cardamom?

Reduce the time from the harvest to the consumption is the only mechanism to get good quality cardamom. Best idea is to be in touch with planters like that of us, who can source the latest harvest cardamom pods for retail consumption. Better storing techniques where there is less humidity, light and heat will enhance the life of the cardamom pod. You can buy our latest produce from https://amazon.in/bbsspicesmalabari

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