Black cardamom is a flowering plant of the Ginger family. It looks similar to ginger tree but it is much bigger. Trees can be up to 2 – 3m high, trunk diameter can be up to 4cm. The fruit grows in the root into red clusters. Normally, people mainly collect seeds, each of which contains about 20 seeds. The seeds have a characteristic aroma because it contains up to 1.5% essential oil with a hot, pleasant spicy taste.
It usually grows wild or in the mountains. In Vietnam, the tree is grown in the mountains Hoang Lien Son and the Northwest, in the districts of Lao Cai, Yen Bai, Ha Giang, Lai Chau province… The place having the largest cardamom production is Bat Xat district (Lao Cai). In China, it is available in Yunnan and Guangxi province.
The main chemical component in black cardamom is essential oil. It has a rich content of nutrients, such as: Carbohydrates; riboflavin and thiamin; protein; vitamins such as vitamin C, niacin, pyridoxine, minerals like phosphorus, calcium, copper, manganese, iron, magnesium and zinc; fiber; oil…
Store cardamom in a cool, moderate temperature and avoid high humidity. Do not peel the cardamom when you don’t need to use. Peeling will destroy the aroma of the fruit.