Peppercorn is known as the king of spices, and it's no coincidence. Peppercorns can benefit digestion, weight, blood pressure, and even fight cancer. Though salt is the most widely used spice, peppercorn is the most widely traded spice in the world. And while it’s known as the king of spices, it’s actually a fruit. Yes, a fruit. From the Piperaceae family, the black pepper vine produces peppercorns, which are the fruit of the pepper plant that have been dried for use. There are three types of peppercorns: (1) Green peppercorns are the unripe version of the dried fruit. White peppercorns are derived from nearly ripe peppercorn fruits with the skin removed. Black peppercorns, which have been cooked and then dried, are the most common.
A pinch of black pepper is added to almost every type of recipe imaginable. Once used as currency and presented to the gods as a sacred offering, it is fortunate that this most popular of spices is available throughout the year. Black pepper comes from the pepper plant, a smooth woody vine that can grow up to 33 feet in hot and humid tropical climates. They begin to bear small white clustered flowers after 3 to 4 years and develop into berries known as peppercorns. Ground peppercorns produce the spice we call pepper.
Learn more about black pepper nutrition facts, health benefits, healthy recipes, and other fun facts to enrich your diet.