Elettaria cardamomum / Elettaria major
Origin: Sri Lanka, India, Southeast Asia, Near East
After vanilla, cardamom is the most expensive spice on the world market
Original cardamom comes from Malabar and Ceylon
Malabar cardamom - Elettaria cardamomum
Ceylon cardamom - Elettaria major
As its name indicates, this cardamom tree is larger and its fruit bigger. However it produces a lesser-quality spice.
The Kravanh mountains of Cambodia and Thailand were for a long time known as the Cardamom Mountains, but they also produce a false cardamom, from the same ginger family, but of the aframomum variety instead of amomum.
Cardamom from Indochina - Amomum kravanh - called amome
This species is recognizable by its round pod. Its flowers grow in long spikes.
Cardamom can be found in three forms:
- green - most fragrant
- black - larger and very aromatic
- white - blander since it is treated to make it white
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