Black cardamom

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Black Cardamom
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Black Cardamom fruit as used as spice
Black Cardamom fruit as used as spice
Plant Info
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Scientific classification
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Kingdom: Plantae
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Division: Magnoliophyta
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Class: Liliopsida
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Order: Zingiberales
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Superfamily: {{{superfamilia}}}
Family: Zingiberaceae
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Genus: Amomum
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Species: A. subulatum
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Binomial name
Amomum subulatum
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Black cardamom (also known as brown cardamom), like cardamom, is a plant in the family Zingiberaceae. Its pods are used as a spice, in a manner similar to the green Indian cardamom pods, but it has a drastically different flavor so it can not be substituted in the same recipes unless a different flavor is acceptable. Unlike green cardamom, this spice is rarely used in sweet dishes. Its strong smoky flavor and aroma are derived from the traditional drying procedure, which involves drying over open flames.[1] Black Cardamom is often erroneously described as an inferior substitute to green cardamom by those who are unfamiliar with the spice.



There are at least two distinct species of black cardamom: Amomum subulatum (also known as Nepal cardamom) and Amomum tsao-ko. Of the two, the pods of A. subulatum are smaller and used primarily in the cuisines of India, while the pods of A. tsao-ko (Chinese: ; pinyin: cǎoguǒ) are larger and used in Chinese cuisine, particularly the cuisine of Sichuan.


In India, black cardamom seeds are an important component in some versions of the Indian spice mixture called garam masala. Black cardamom is also commonly used in savory dal and rice dishes.

In China, the pods are used for long-braised meat dishes, particularly in the cuisine of the central-western province of Sichuan. The pods are also often used in Vietnamese cuisine, where they are called thảo quả and are used as an ingredient in the broth for the noodle soup dish called phở.

Although the flavor differs from the more common green cardamom, black cardamom is sometimes used by large-scale commercial bakers because of its relative cheapness.

Because of its smoky flavor, black cardamom pods can be used in soups, chowders, casseroles, and marinades to create a bacon flavor.

External links


See also

Template:Herbs & spices

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