Cardamom Seed Green (whole)
Commonly referred to as green cardamom because the pods are bright green in colour and not to be confused with brown or large cardamom (Cardamomum amomum).
Has a sweet eucalyptus like aroma that adds “fresh” notes to spice mixes. The strong camphor-like flavour earns cardamom a position among the pungent spices and it is therefore used in small quantities.
Native to the Western Ghats of India and Sri Lanka. Harvested from wild plants and not cultivated until 1800. Traded heavily by the Greeks in the 4th century B.C.
The pods, seeds and ground seeds are used in curries and sweet spice mixes. Compliments vegetable and meat dishes. Traditional in Danish pastry.
Cardamom pods are picked before fully ripe (ripe pods tend to split) and kiln dried. Greenest pods fetch the best prices. Variations in quality are generally due to post harvest drying/handling. Ground pods with seeds (having less flavour) are sometimes passed off as ground cardamom seeds.
It is common for those following Asian and Indian cookbooks to confuse green and brown cardamoms. Brown has a distinct “musty-smokey” flavour and green and brown cardamom are not interchangeable in recipes.
Other Common Names: Cardamom Seed, Cardamom Pods, Green Cardamom.
Botanical Name: (Eletaria cardamomum)
Health Benefits: Related to ginger, cardamom serves to enhance digestion and soothe digestive discomforts. Cardamom is naturally detoxifying, assisting the kidneys in waste removal, and serving as a diuretic, eliminating impurities burdening the eliminatory organs. Cardamom is a natural means of improving oral health and can help to both freshen breath and health ulcers.