RECIPE: Pepper-flavoured kulfi? Go ahead and try it out

A pinch of black pepper can be added to almost every imaginable recipe. Black pepper comes from the pepper plant, a smooth woody vine that can grow up to 33 feet in a tropical climate. It begins 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.

Black peppercorns are made by picking the pepper berries when they are half ripe and just about to turn red. They are then left to dry which causes them to shrivel and turn dark in colour. Alternatively, green peppercorns are picked while still unripe and green in colour, while white peppercorns are picked when very ripe and subsequently soaked in brine to remove their dark outer shell, leaving just the white pepper seed.

Black pepper is the most pungent and flavourful of all types of peppers. It is available as whole or cracked peppercorns or ground into powder.

Native to India, pepper has played an important role in history and has been a prized spice since ancient times. Today, the major commercial producers are India and Indonesia. To ensure best flavour, buy whole peppercorns and grind them yourself in a mill just before adding to a recipe.

Black pepper is an excellent source of manganese, iron, vitamin K and dietary fibre.

Now, for a recipe.

Kali mirchi ki kulfi

Ingredients

Full fat milk: 500 ml

Condensed milk: 50 ml

Cardamom powder: half tsp

Black pepper, crushed: half tsp

Method: Mix all the ingredients together and bring the mixture to a boil. Simmer for 10 minutes till the mixture thickens, cool it. Pour it into kulfi moulds and freeze it overnight until it becomes firm. To un-mould the kulfi, keep it outside the freezer.

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