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ouzo's picture

peppercorns (post #35675)

Can we talk peppercorns?  How many varieties do you have in your pantry?  When do use the different varieties?  I usually use the plain old black variety.

"The best tricks are the simplest and the simplest tricks are the oldest" -Simon the owl

  No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted - Aesop, The Lion & the mouse

chiffonade's picture

(post #35675, reply #1 of 46)

I love straight white peppercorns but do use mixes.  Mixes I use generally contain pink, white, black and green. 


There was some drama a while back over Szechuan peppercorns but they are now available.  I used to use them quite a lot when they were plentiful and readily available. 


If I was forced to choose just one type of peppercorn, it would be white, hands down.  White peppercorns don't show up in white dishes and sauces but magically, they don't show up in darker food either. 


"Sandra Lee is the Culinary Anti-Christ and I am the Anti-Sandra Lee.  The precious moments you may take to measure a level cup of flour are NOT wasted time!"


Chiffonade

*You're a REAL person, eat REAL food."

Chiffonade

thecooktoo's picture

(post #35675, reply #2 of 46)

I don't usually buy the mixes but I do have pink, green, black and white on hand in varying quantities.  Pink is not really a pepper, white is just black with the outer coat taken off and the green I keep are usually packed wet because I like to use them in a green pepper sauce for beef.  The white ones are hotter, but I don't think they have the same full flavor of the black.


I do have a bottle of mixed peppercorns that came with a new pepper mill I bought a few months ago, and I'll use them on the table until they are gone.


Jim

nexus's picture

(post #35675, reply #3 of 46)

Um, black Tillicherry and white. I usually just reach for the big peppermill with the Tillicherry.


By the way, how are you doing? I keep meaning to call but I'm just so darned distracted. My bad.


Cheryl

ouzo's picture

(post #35675, reply #6 of 46)

Everything is great!  And I am just as guilty of not contacting you!

"The best tricks are the simplest and the simplest tricks are the oldest" -Simon the owl

  No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted - Aesop, The Lion & the mouse

Glenys's picture

(post #35675, reply #4 of 46)

I keep about four and then Grains of Paradise and Szechuan.  White is still the most used culinary pepper if you considered world-wide use.  Black took over in North America because historically it was easier to send whatever pepper, whatever quality, so black it was.


My go-to black pepper for the last thirty years has been tellicherry and montuk white but I've added a large seed Sarawak lately and some organic black corns, can't remember from where.


On thing for sure, they taste completely different, yet again, when ground with the ceramic grinder. 

ouzo's picture

(post #35675, reply #5 of 46)

Maybe I just don't have a wide ranging palate.  While was stocking up on bulk spices at the store the other day, I noticed the various peppercorns and realized that most recipes I cook don't specify the color of peppercorn.  I rarely cook asian recipes, so that's probably why I've never seen a recipe call for green peppercorns.


Lately I've been crushing the peppercorns, rather than grinding them.  I should probably buy all that are available at the store and do a taste test. 


"The best tricks are the simplest and the simplest tricks are the oldest" -Simon the owl

  No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted - Aesop, The Lion & the mouse

soupereasy's picture

(post #35675, reply #7 of 46)

I use a blend of green, pink, white, black and jamaican(which I don't think is a true pepper).
Picked up a jar of Szechuan and just love it!
Need to get better educated about peppers, thought I was getting Tellicherry (sp?).
Now I have the wrong type of grinder, not ceramic. :/


So much to learn, so little time. Or as the old adage goes "The more I learn the less I know.".

Risottogirl's picture

(post #35675, reply #12 of 46)

I love my ceramic grinders. I'm glad they are more readily available here now, I bought mine in France some years ago.

Water is a great ingredient to cook with, it has such a neutral flavor - Bobby Flay

Water is a great ingredient to cook with, it has such a neutral flavor - Bobby Flay

Adele's picture

(post #35675, reply #8 of 46)

I have tellicherry for black, Indonesia muntuk for white, a mix of red, white, black and green.  My new favorite is green peppercorns, but they are dried not packed in wet.  They have a nice flavor. 

But, but, it's SUPPOSED to taste like that!

But, but, it's SUPPOSED to taste like that!

schnitzel's picture

(post #35675, reply #9 of 46)

I use Tellicherry black and Sarawak white peppercorns the most, and Szechuan peppercorns occasionally. It depends on the recipe.

soupereasy's picture

(post #35675, reply #10 of 46)

So, Tellicherry and Szechan are different?


Must say the Szechuan are very fruity. Thought they would be very "hot", not so.


edit because my hands are having a hissy, poor buggers can't remember which buttons to press :(


Edited 3/10/2008 10:05 pm ET by soupereasy

Marcia's picture

(post #35675, reply #11 of 46)

Tellicherry is one of a variety of black peppercorns, but Szechuan pepper is not really peppercorns at all and should be used very differently.

The Szechuan pepper is usually lightly toasted before being ground in a mortar, frequently with salt. And nowadays, it's spelled Sichuan. The peppers have a bit of a mouth numbing effect.

I think I got that all right, but it's getting late. Please forgive if I mangled some of the info. :)


Edited 3/11/2008 9:56 am ET by Marcia

chefathome's picture

(post #35675, reply #13 of 46)

White, green, pink, black, Tellicherry and Szechaun - all used for different methods.


One thing I add to my peppermill with whole black peppercorns is whole Allspice berries.  Just the smallest ones - only about 10-20 per peppermill.  Absolutely love the flavour.  Warm and earthy.  :)


"The joys of the table belong equally to all ages, conditions, countries and times; they mix with all other pleasures, and remain the last to console us for their loss."
Jean Antheleme Brillat-Savarin, The Physiology of Taste
"The joys of the table belong equally to all ages, conditions, countries and times; they mix with all other pleasures, and remain the last to console us for their loss."
Jean Antheleme Brillat-Savarin, The Physiology of Taste
Risottogirl's picture

(post #35675, reply #14 of 46)

I mix allspice with tellicherry in one grinder too. It is the favorite go-to "blend".

Water is a great ingredient to cook with, it has such a neutral flavor - Bobby Flay

Water is a great ingredient to cook with, it has such a neutral flavor - Bobby Flay

chefathome's picture

(post #35675, reply #15 of 46)

Yes - and I almost forgot Mignonette Pepper (blend of Tellicherry, Muntok and coriander).  All dry roasted first, of course.

"The joys of the table belong equally to all ages, conditions, countries and times; they mix with all other pleasures, and remain the last to console us for their loss."
Jean Antheleme Brillat-Savarin, The Physiology of Taste

"The joys of the table belong equally to all ages, conditions, countries and times; they mix with all other pleasures, and remain the last to console us for their loss."
Jean Antheleme Brillat-Savarin, The Physiology of Taste
mishmish's picture

(post #35675, reply #16 of 46)

We love pepper in this house and our favorites are Sarawak and the Extra Bold from Penzys.

Don't let your mind wander. It's much to small to be out by itself.

Don't let your mind wander. It's much to small to be out by itself.
Aberwacky's picture

(post #35675, reply #18 of 46)

Tellicherry in the big grinder, plus Montauk white, green from Zingerman's (don't know the variety) and szechuan in separate containers. All dried.

I love the green pepper--it has an almost flowery fragrance I find appealing.

Leigh

Strengthen your immune system; eat more dirt!


www.twiningvinedesigns.etsy.com

"Happiness does not depend on outward things, but on the way we see them." 
-Leo Tolstoy
DeannaS's picture

(post #35675, reply #19 of 46)

Aw, geez. Now I want to try green peppercorns AND get a ceramic grinder. *grumble grumble - enablers - grumble*

"As for butter versus margarine, I trust cows more than chemists." - Joan Dye Gussow

Aberwacky's picture

(post #35675, reply #20 of 46)

Well, you do have a local Penzey's where you can get the peppercorns!

Madison, WI
3252 University Avenue
(608) 238-5776

Mon.-Fri.: 9:30AM - 5:30PM
Sat.: 9:30AM - 5:00PM
Sun.: 10:00AM - 4:00PM

http://www.penzeys.com/cgi-bin/penzeys/p-penzeysgreenpeppercorns.html

And, the 1/4 cup jar is only $2.59

Leigh

Strengthen your immune system; eat more dirt!


www.twiningvinedesigns.etsy.com

"Happiness does not depend on outward things, but on the way we see them." 
-Leo Tolstoy
DeannaS's picture

(post #35675, reply #21 of 46)

Oh, believe you me, I'm well acquainted with our local Penzeys. :)

"As for butter versus margarine, I trust cows more than chemists." - Joan Dye Gussow

Aberwacky's picture

(post #35675, reply #22 of 46)

That was the first brick-and-mortar Penzey's I ever visited.
Let's just say I didn't leave empty handed, LOL.

Leigh

Strengthen your immune system; eat more dirt!


www.twiningvinedesigns.etsy.com

"Happiness does not depend on outward things, but on the way we see them." 
-Leo Tolstoy
Heather's picture

(post #35675, reply #23 of 46)

I can't find any white peppercorns that don't have a terrible smell. How about the Montauk?

Jean's picture

(post #35675, reply #24 of 46)

Yes, I know that terrible manure smell.  Ick.



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Heather's picture

(post #35675, reply #25 of 46)

My latest try was the Penzey's Sarawak--same bad smell.

Glenys's picture

(post #35675, reply #26 of 46)

It does smell a bit like baby vomit but just ignore it, it's worth it.

Heather's picture

(post #35675, reply #27 of 46)

But how do I hold my nose and grind at the same time? ;-)

Risottogirl's picture

(post #35675, reply #28 of 46)

Oh for pete's sake it's not THAT bad! I have been using mostly white pepper for ages and I don't even notice it.

Water is a great ingredient to cook with, it has such a neutral flavor - Bobby Flay

Water is a great ingredient to cook with, it has such a neutral flavor - Bobby Flay

Glenys's picture

(post #35675, reply #29 of 46)

I think it's an eye opener since the black pepper many use is so inferior.  A little fresh Sarawak announces itself. 

Risottogirl's picture

(post #35675, reply #32 of 46)

True, my black pepper doesn't smell any less than the white, just different :)

Water is a great ingredient to cook with, it has such a neutral flavor - Bobby Flay

Water is a great ingredient to cook with, it has such a neutral flavor - Bobby Flay