Cardamom (or cardamon) refers to many plants of the similar genera Elettaria and Amomum within the ginger family Zingiberaceae. They’re most recognizable from their seed pods. Cardamom pods have a skinny, papery outer shell and tiny black seeds within. Today, Central American is the biggest producer of cardamom in the world, followed by Asia . Cardamom has a robust, distinctive flavor that’s intensely aromatic.
Green cardamom pods are one among most costly spices by weight, however very little is required to impart the flavor. Cardamom is best kept in the pods until its ready to be used. It tends to lose its flavor if left exposed outside of the pod.
Cardamom is a typical ingredient used in Indian cuisine. in the Middle East, powder from the cardamom pods are used as a spice for sweet dishes and occasionally used in teas. Cardamom can also be used for savory dishes as well. In South Asia, the pods are used in ancient Indian sweets and Masala Chai (spiced tea). Black cardamom is used in garam masala for curries and is sometimes used as a garnish in basmati rice and other rice dishes.
Medicinally, cardamom pods are used in South Asia to treat infections in teeth and gums, throat troubles, congestion of the lungs, and inflammation of eyelids. They’re also used to help break down kidney stones and gall stones in the bladder. Cardamom pods have been reportedly used as an anti-venom for snake and scorpion bites as well. The plant has also been utilized in Ancient Asian treatment of constipation, dysentery, abdomen problems, and other digestion issues.