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I decided to experiment a bit with macro photography yesterday, with cardamom as my first subject. I've made so many wonderful dishes with cardamom recently, and I found it really interesting to focus on it, in its different forms, through the lens of the camera for a moment. It's really amazing how many things we look at every day that we don't really see.
Some things I never knew (how about you?):
- Cardamom is referred to as the queen of spices, and black pepper the king.
- It is native to the jungles of south India and Sri Lanka, and belongs to the family of ginger.
- It is second only to saffron in cost.
- Cleopatra apparently found the scent of cardamom so enticing that she would burn the crushed pods, instead of incense, before the arrival of Marc Antony.
- In the New Testament, which was largely written in Greek, 'amooman' appears in reference to the aromatic plant cardamom. The word means "blameless without reproach".
I'm interested in trying the white and black varieties of cardamom as well. If anyone has any suggestions or would like to pass along a recipe for either type, please let me know!