Talk:Black cardamom

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Is there a reference for the name Cardamomum amomum for brown cardamom? Even if it has ever been valid, if it is not now it should be labelled as a synonym. -- WormRunner 03:17, 29 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Also, reference to this plant as "back cardamom" outnumber references to "brown cardamom". Clearly both names should be mentioned, but it should not have been moved to a less used name. -- WormRunner 03:48, 29 Feb 2004 (UTC)


Is this spice smoked? I just bought a package for the first time and it smells strongly of smoke, and tastes that way too. Badagnani 20:28, 21 September 2006 (UTC)


Black cardamom is, in most books, described as an inferior substitute to green cardamom, but this is simply untrue. In India, black cardamom has its special field of application, and although green and black cardamoms are frequently interchangeable, the black variety is felt superior for spicy and rustic dishes, while green cardamom is much preferred by the Imperial (Mughal) cuisine with its subtle blend of sweet fragrances. Black cardamom can be used in rather liberal amounts, up to a few capsules per person. The smoky fragrance of the pure spice is not discernible in the finished dish; black cardamom cannot dominate a dish, but enhances and intensifies the taste of other ingredients. The pods should be slightly crushed before usage, but not so much that the seeds are released; you may remove them before serving (though I do not), but if you don't, be sure to warn your guests about dark, woody and, hmmm, intensive tasting objects in the sauce. Black cardamom, as other spices used in Northern India, needs some time to develop its aroma best. This behaviour is shared by other unground spices, like cinnamon, cloves and green cardamom, all of which are popular in Northern India and mostly used unground (see also onion). Thus, it is generally a good idea to prepare Northern Indian dishes of braising type (kormas) a few hours or even one day in advance. Although there are many distinct species of black cardamom, ranging in pod size from 2 cm (A. subulatum, Nepal to North Vietnam) to more than 5 cm (A. tsao-ko, China), their tastes do not differ much, although only the Nepal variety is smoked. Apart from usage in Indian (and Nepali) cuisine, they are not much known, but have some regional importance in Central and Southern China. There, the ground seeds are an optional ingredient to the five spice powder (see star anise). In the mountains of Sichuan province in central China, black cardamom is commonly employed in long-simmered meet stews together with other dried spices. Long-simmered food, particularly of beef, are rather typical for Sichuan cookery (see sichuan pepper for an example) and are less frequently found in other Chinese cooking styles. The term xiang liao [香料] “fragrant grains” refers to such mixtures of dried spices which are prepared differently for each recipe. Typical components of xiang liao are cassia, Sichuan pepper, black cardamom, star anise and lesser galangale; less commonly, Sichuan cooks employ greater galangale, cloves, nutmeg and licorice. See also cassia on another Chinese cooking technique that uses dried spices, namely master sauce

Poisonous uncooked?[edit]

That warning from the back of one package kind of warrants some kind of explanation. Is it dangerous to eat raw (smoked)? Swooch (talk) 11:15, 6 June 2013 (UTC)


Hi! I'm a bit confused. Is cǎoguǒ (草果) Amomum costatum? The Plant List says Amomum costatum is a synonym of Hornstedtia costata. Amomum tsao-ko article says cǎoguǒ (草果) is Amomum tsao-ko. --Brett (talk) 11:21, 19 May 2017 (UTC)

@Brett Cox:; associating cǎoguǒ with Amomum costatum appears to be an error. For that matter, so does associating Amomum costatum with "black cardamom". Other Amomum species may occasionally be used as spices, but none seem to be as important as A. subulatum. Plantdrew (talk) 21:16, 19 May 2017 (UTC)