What is useful for us cardamom?
Far from all Europeans know about the existence of such a plant, but in the East cardamom is a favorite spice that is actively used in cooking, as well as for the treatment of many ailments. The homeland of such a plant is the forests of South India, it is there that the three-chamber boxes of cardamom are still being harvested, although, according to some scientists, it could have appeared in Ancient Mesopotamia.
There is even a beautiful belief that boxes with fragrant and exquisite cardamom could be found in the legendary hanging gardens of Queen Semiramis, which is why, rightly, it is called one of the most ancient and respected spices in the world.
From the countries of the Middle East, cardamom migrated to Europe, Arab hucksters quickly spread it to Ancient Greece and Rome, whose locals soon became accustomed to and loved such an amazing and luxurious at that time spice.
In the Middle Ages, cardamom was successfully used as a medicinal drug, which, according to the beliefs of the pharmacists of that time, was able to save from any misfortune.Such a medicine was expensive, but, interestingly, it really often helped, as it became clear later, this is no accident, because cardamom is a very useful plant and, rich in useful substances, a plant.
As in past centuries, it is actively used in cooking, many national cuisines of the world do not do without such fragrant and extraordinary spices. For example, they are revered in the German and Scandinavian cuisine, but in European they are rarely used, but in vain.
Cardamom, due to the rich list of its beneficial properties, deserves the attention of every person who cares about his health and prefers to eat organic foods. Not everyone knows that such a spice has several types, each of which has its own characteristics and applications.
For example, the most beloved and revered cardamom is green, it is grown directly in India and Malaysia, it has a more complex and unique aroma, resinous smell and a special taste. There is another type - black cardamom, it is most often harvested in Australia and tropical Asia, it differs from greener in larger grains, they are darker and have a slightly different flavor.
It is believed that this species, due to its fresh, cooling, without bitterness, notes of taste, can be used in cooking in large quantities, without spoiling the dish.
Useful properties and composition
What is so useful this spice, because its scope is really quite extensive, and cooking - only a small part of it. Cardamom is an amazing oriental plant that is a rich source of many important B and C vitamins, which affect the condition of the skin and hair, as well as support the body’s protective functions at the required level.
The many-sided taste and aroma of the spice is explained by its complex and intricate composition, among the elements of which the cardamom essential oil stands out most clearly, which has an antiseptic, analgesic and healing properties.
In addition, it contains a decent amount of minerals, micro-and macro-elements: phosphorus, zinc, magnesium, calcium, iron, manganese, copper, sodium.
Due to its composition, cardamom is able to improve the work of the digestive system, improve appetite and contribute to the release of a sufficient amount of gastric juice.Perhaps that's why during the time of Ancient Rome it was with his help that they escaped the consequences of overeating: the Romans drank tea on the basis of cardamom, ginger and clove fruit.
Such an unusual tea drink even nowadays can relieve pain and heaviness in the stomach, cope with indigestion, and also improve the overall tone of the body. Also, experts noted the cardamom's ability to positively influence the psycho-emotional state of a person: calming effect, stimulation of brain activity, and also good prevention of headaches.
Cardamom is able to increase the overall tone and endurance of the body, which is very useful for people who often face increased mental or physical stress, using it to really get rid of constant fatigue and increased fatigue of the body.
In some herbal medicinal preparations it is used to treat diseases of the genitourinary system, in addition, cardamom is considered a natural aphrodisiac, which is able to cope with male impotence.
Also, this spice can be used to rinse sore throat for colds and flu,as a natural antiseptic, and if cardamom mixed with honey and use it every day in the right amounts, it is also able to enhance vision.
It is also known that cardamom can be used even for weight loss and, although it is difficult to call it a low-calorie product, it is able to remove toxins and slags from the body in small quantities, which is very important for the process of dropping extra pounds.
Nutritionists recommend using it along with coffee, not only does it reduce the harmful effects of caffeine on the human body, but also in this combination is able to protect it from high blood pressure.
Use in cooking
As we have already said, it is a spice with a world name, it is added to almost all traditional Indian mixtures (masala), in addition, it is actively used in cooking in other countries.
For example, in Scandinavia, cardamom is added to meat and fish dishes, they are flavored with sausages, cheeses and pies, and also added to marinades for herring, salacas and sprat, are actively used to enrich the flavor and taste of many liqueurs, punches and hot mulled wine.The Arabs from the most ancient times add it to coffee, and the Chinese - to tea. In the eastern kitchen, cardamom, combined with saffron and almonds, is always added to all festive dishes.
Cardamom, like most other spices, is most useful in a fresh state, the already crushed or half-aged grains will not be so valuable and important to the human body.
In general, this spice is distinguished by a rather pronounced, piquant, slightly camphor, burning and sometimes even with light lemon notes, taste, so that it cannot be very involved, since an unused stomach can react quite sharply to such an unusual taste range.
It is important to know that cardamom has a number of its contraindications: it is not recommended to use for pregnant and lactating women, as well as for those who have acute gastritis, a stomach ulcer or other serious diseases of the gastrointestinal tract.
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