African Pepper is the seed pod of a shrubby tree found in Africa and is used in various culinary preparations. It is also known as Grains of Selim, Kimba Pepper, Moor Pepper, Negro Pepper, Ethiopian Pepper, Guinea Pepper, Hwentia Pepper, Kani Pepper and Kili Pepper. However, it should not be confused with Grains of paradise. It is used as a substitute for black pepper and has a musky flavor. It is green or deep brown in color and grows in clusters at the centre of the plant.
African pepper is commonly grown through tropical Africa, ranging from Ghana to Ethiopia.
Preferred Methods of Cooking
African Pepper is used as a whole in the dishes and then removed. It can also be smoked and then ground into powder for use or simply crushed and added to the cooking dish.
Cuisines and Popular Recipes
It is popularly used in African cuisines to make popular dishes such as soups, stews, Touba Coffee and also as a spice rub for fish. Some of the other popular preparations are West African Chicken Pepper Soup, White Soup a la Nkechi, Ras el Hanout, Peanut Soup, Dry Rice with Fish, Pork and Yam Pepper Soup, Ofe Nsala, Nigerian Seasoning Mix and Stew with Millet among many others.
African pepper contains calcium, iron, potassium, sodium protein, dietary fiber and vitamins A and C.
Buying and Storing
African pepper can be stored in an airtight container, which has a shelf life of about 6 months.
· During medieval times African pepper was used as a substitute for black pepper in Europe, due to shortage of black pepper.
· It is pungent like the black pepper but has a slight bitter aftertaste, which limits its use to its native region only.
· It raises testosterone level.