Vibrant Pink Peppercorns are milder than black pepper, with a spicy-sweet flavour that matches well with seafood and cream sauces.
Pink peppercorns are the dried berry of the Schinus molle – a Peruvian tree that is actually more closely related to the cashew family than the pepper family. The berries are harvested, dried and then sold as a version of common black pepper. Pink peppercorns are generally grown in hot sub-tropical areas such as central America and the Americas.
HOW TO STORE
Dried pink peppercorns are generally available at quality food stores and delicatessens. They are best kept in a dry, clean jar, sealed from oxygen and away from sunlight to prevent drying out or colour degradation. The dried berries will only keep their piquancy for a short time, so avoid keeping them for more than a year.
HOW TO COOK
Milder than standard black pepper, pink peppercorns can be used to add delicious depth of flavour to any dish. Since they’re too soft to be ground in a pepper mill, they tend to be sprinkled whole or lightly crushed in most dishes. They go well with chicken, fish, and rich meats, and they’re often used to flavour delicate sauces that accompany seafood and pork. They can also be used to add a hint of spice to central American chocolate recipes. They do come with a warning, however – if they’re over-used or not properly dried, they can create a toxicity in consumption. The raw fruit and the leaves are also considered toxic. If pink peppercorns are left in sunshine they will dry and become brown and shrivelled, so be sure to store them carefully.