Using Black Pepper in Bengali & Indian Cooking Explained

Black pepper is rightfully called the “King of Spices”. The fact that black pepper is actually a flowering vine may surprise many.

The seeds are dried before being used for cooking and seasoning. Black pepper offers a unique spiciness that finely goes with salt.

Black pepper seeds are characterized by wrinkled skin. It is extensively used in Indian cuisines, both as whole and in powdered form.

Freshly ground black pepper has a strong aroma. Black pepper powder should be stored in an air-tight container to retain its flavour.

Using Black Pepper in Bengali & Indian Cooking

Uses of Black Pepper in Bengali & Indian Cuisines

In Indian cuisines, black peppers are widely used in a variety of dishes.

It is a common masala found in every Indian household. Both whole black pepper seeds and powdered spice are easily available in the market.

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The powdered form goes into different cuisines, both traditional and fusion, just like any other Indian spices.

It lends both aromatic flavour and mild spiciness to the dish. The whole pepper seeds are used in dals, pulao and biryani for their strong and spicy flavour.

Black pepper is one of the ingredients used in making garam masala powder which is a versatile mix of spices and frequently used in rich, spicy Indian cuisines.

It is also used as a part of chat masala sprinkled on many famous Indian street foods.

In powdered form, it is also used for seasoning in different dishes including sandwiches, stews, soups, salads, sauces, curd and grilled meat.

Black pepper is sprinkled on a variety of salads, raitas, dips and even marinades so that its flavour penetrates into the ingredients.

Black pepper powder is also used in wraps, rolls, salmon and dry fish.

Whole black pepper seeds are roasted and ground to make smooth powder. It is used in sambar and a variety of curry recipes, including non-veg curries that are rich in spiciness.

Though used in a little amount, it can do wonders to whatever dish you are adding it to.

Whole black pepper seeds are tempered in oil, butter or ghee and then added to dal, curries, biryani and other dishes to make them more flavourful and mouth-watering.

The pungency of the spice adds a uniquely flavourful and sumptuous taste to khichri.

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Black pepper is a much-loved ingredient in many South Indian delicacies. It makes simple rasam and sambar incredibly appetizing.

When Should You Add Pepper in Cooking?

When used in powdered form, black pepper should be added just before you take the pan out of the oven.

It will retain the fresh flavour of black pepper. If you are using whole black pepper seeds, these should be added at the start.

Make sure to keep flame low when adding the seeds to oil or ghee.

This is mostly done when preparing pulao, biryani, dals or any rich curry that is flavoured with a variety of whole spices such as, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon, black pepper etc.

Can You Add Pepper to Boiling Water?

Yes, it can be added to boiling water. In fact, this combination is a traditional home-made recipe to remove toxins from the body.

It also improves skin texture and tone. Black pepper is believed to have numerous health benefits.

Questions & Answers:

Is Black Pepper Tasty?

Black pepper has a strong aroma. Its distinct and delicious taste adds a range of interesting flavours to the cuisines.

What Goes Well with Black Pepper?

Black pepper goes well with a whole range of items. For seasoning, it pairs best with salt. In cooking, it is used with a variety of commonly used spices.

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Should You Cook with Black Pepper?

Definitely! Black pepper has several health benefits. In addition to making a dish flavoursome, it also helps promote digestion power.

What Foods Can You Put Black Pepper On?

Black pepper is sprinkled on sandwiches, salads, soups, stews, curd, sambars and even some kinds of drinks for a slightly spicy and decent aroma.

Which Black Pepper is Best for Cooking?

Tellicherry black pepper is one of the finest varieties. It is procured from Tellicherry, a city anchored on the Malabar Coast of Kerala.

Does Black Pepper Make Food Spicy?

On the Scoville Scale, black pepper is mildly hot, especially if compared to any type of chilli. It offers a certain degree of pungency that is very much tolerable.

What is the Taste of Black Pepper?

Black pepper has a mild, pungent taste. It also has a spicy taste which adds flavour to every dish.

Is Black Pepper Bitter?

No, it tastes slightly pungent and spicy but you cannot say it's bitter.

Is Black Pepper a Spice or Seasoning?

Black pepper is used both as a spice and seasoning. It is used in various dishes which are easily made and cooked. Especially things like toast, boiled potatoes etc.

Which Part of Black Pepper is Used?

Black peppers, used as whole or in powdered form, are actually fruits.

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