The Tellicherry pepper in the FINEST FOOD AGE PEPPER COLLECTION comes from the Indian state of Kerala, where it is grown in the Periyar nature reserve on the Malabar Coast. It takes its name from that of the port formerly known as Tellicherry (now Thalassery). The Malarbar Coast, also known as the Pepper Coast, is the homeland of pepper. The processes involved in growing, Harvesting and drying the peppercorns have been perfected there over centuries. This long tradition yields pepper of a quality unsurpassed elsewhere.
Botanically the Tellicherry pepper is a real pepper of the species Piper nigrum, that subgroup of the Piperaceae that we know as pepper. The berries of this climbing plant, which grows to heights of up to ten metres, are our familiar peppercorns. The Tellicherry pepper is grown by farmers on small plots of land; the ripening berries are picked by hand and then gently dried. Tellicherry pepper is reddish brown rather than black in colour. This is because the berries are left to ripen for longer before picking – it is what is known as a late-harvest pepper.
After drying, the farmers very carefully select the largest and best-looking pepper berries. They pick out only peppercorns with a diameter of about 4.75 mm. Only about ten percent of the harvested corns that come onto the market are designated TGSEB (= Tellicherry Garbled Special Extra Bold), indicating that they have been selected via this painstaking manual process. This Tellicherry pepper is a real rarity!
The Tellicherry pepper in the FINEST FOOD AGE PEPPER COLLECTION comes from the highest of the three possible quality classes (TGSEB – Tellicherry Garbled Special Extra Bold). This means that only the best pepper berries measuring 4.75 mm in diameter have been picked out in a painstaking manual selection process.
The Tellicherry pepper in the FINEST FOOD AGE PEPPER COLLECTION is a highly flavoured late-harvest pepper. Unlike traditional black pepper, which is harvested when green and unripe and only turns black when dried, the Tellicherry pepper is not harvested until the berries are starting to ripen. As a result the peppercorns are noticeably bigger, the flavour is decidedly more intense and the sharpness is crisper. The Tellicherry pepper could therefore be called the archetype of the pepper taste!
The dense flavour of the Tellicherry pepper combines resinous, nutty notes somewhat reminiscent of the tangy forest floor with a warm, intense pungency. It is the ideal pepper to use if you want the typical pepper flavour to be a prominent feature of a dish. It is a good all-purpose pepper and goes with all types of meat as well as with hard cheese.
To come into its own, Tellicherry pepper is best used freshly ground. It can also be used whole in stews and hotpots: add a few peppercorns for the final 15 minutes of cooking and remove them again before serving.
To ensure protection from harmful environmental influences, the Tellicherry pepper in the FINEST FOOD AGE PEPPER COLLECTION is supplied in high-quality violet glass jars. Keeping this special jar tightly closed will ensure that the Tellicherry pepper always has the dry and dark Storage conditions that it needs.