It is so common to find in the world of herbs and spices an immense variety of them, used both in cooking and in natural medicine, however, not all of them are as well known as cardamom, a plant that provides benefits to many people through its numerous properties.
If you have no idea what it is, don’t worry, because here we tell you everything that you should know about this spice: what it is, where it comes from, and how we can take advantage of its culinary and therapeutic qualities, as well as many other curiosities.
Know what cardamom is and what it is like
It is a greenish fruit, which is obtained from a tree of the same name and is often used as a condiment, due to the exquisite flavor and pleasant aroma it provides to both sweet and savory dishes. Inside this fruit, there are small brown seeds, this is one of the most expensive spices in the world after saffron and vanilla, which are obtained from ground
Regarding its flavor and aroma, cardamom has a strong and somewhat sweet taste, and it is quite aromatic and with floral notes, so it is combined with other spices such as cinnamon and cloves.
Do you know what the origin of cardamom is?
Now that you know what and how cardamom is, you are surely wondering, where does it come from?
Well, this spice is native to the rainforests of southern India, Sri Lanza, Malaysia, and Sumatra, and today it has come to be cultivated in countries such as Nepal, Thailand, and various areas of Central America.
Cardamom is believed to have been first cultivated in 700 AD in southern India and became known in Europe around 1,200 AD.
Cardamom and its various properties
In case you did not know, cardamom is considered a highly beneficial fruit since it not only has extraordinary properties that benefit our body but
also provides a great addition of nutrients that keep us strong and healthy.
To give you an idea, 100g of cardamom provides 311 Kcal, 68.7 g of carbohydrates, 28 g of fiber, 10.76 g of protein, and 6.7 g of fat. In addition, this spice is used as an important resource of minerals such as sodium, iron, magnesium, calcium, phosphorus, and potassium, and vitamins of A, B1, B2, B3, B12, and C.
Nutritional and mineral values of cardamom
Values for every 100 grams of cardamom
Calories or energy 311 kcal
Protein 10.8 g
Fiber 28 g
Sugars and cholesterol 0.0 g
Potassium 1,119 mg
Salt 0.02 g
Fat 6.70 g
Calcium 383 mg
Vitamin C 21 mg
As for the main properties attributed to this fruit, we find the following:
Antidiabetic: cardamom contains substances that help increase the natural production of manganese in the body, an essential mineral for the good health of the blood regularity, which supports the elimination of excess sugar in the bloodstream, blocking the onset of diabetes and regulating it in those who already suffer it.
Anti-cancer: this fruit is a considerable source of antioxidants that are responsible for fighting free radicals that cause cell aging and that can lead to the growth of cancer cells.
Hepatic: since it contains cineol, cardamom favors liver secretions, allowing the correct functioning of the organ and guaranteeing its detoxification.
Bone: Cardamom is a rich source of calcium, so it helps promote healthy bones and cartilage, as well as their regeneration. Therefore, it is estimated a recommended spice to treat lupus, osteoporosis, arthritis, sclerosis, and osteoarthritis problems.
Where and how is cardamom used?
Since it has a delicious flavor and aroma, as well as phenomenal therapeutic properties, this spice has been adopted in gastronomy as a key ingredient in the preparation of different dishes, and as a powerful natural remedy, capable of alleviating various ailments.
Cardamom in the kitchen
In the kitchen, cardamom is quite useful, both in its presentation in pods or fruits, as well as in seeds, whether they are whole or ground.
It is great for flavoring stews, soups, and sauces, for which you can use the whole pods. However, it is recommended to open them to allow the seeds inside them to also provide all their properties.