In a nutshell: Great Taste 2017 2-star award winner. This Aussie bush tucker ingredient is rich in Vitamin C and the berries will impart amazing flavour and purple colour when added to marinades, salads and sauces.
The exotic Tasmanian pepper (Tasmannia lanceolata), also known as mountain pepper or Cornish pepper leaf, has a fruity flavour reminiscent of blueberry which then matures into the more familiar bite of pungent peppers known to numb the tongue. A popular Australian bush tucker ingredient, it has a lovely purplish colour and biscuity texture if you crunch it in your mouth. Crush it in your mortar with a pestle or roughly chop it with a sharp knife before using. It's distinctive flavour is really exciting and we add it to many recipes - making marinades for poultry and game before roasting, dry rubs with salt and bay leaves to coat lamb and pork before pan-frying or grilling and adding it to custard for our trifles. Bechamel is particularly impressive made from hot milk infused with the berries which impart their imperial purple colour into the mix. Then, simply use the bechamel for dramatic arancini fillings. Try it in salad dressings to pour over beetroot salads or combine it into a soft goat's cheese dip cheese. We also like to spice up our daily bowls of porridge and yoghurt with this berry rich in Vitamin C.
About Épices de Cru
Épices de Cru began in 1982 as a catering partnership between Philippe and Ethné de Vienne. Their mission was a kind of “cooking pot anthropology:” learning the secrets of family cooking around the world and applying these techniques to the needs of hungry Montrealers. The secret, they learned, was spices. Over the last two decades, Philippe and Ethné have searched for the world’s best spices, accompanied by their children, Marika and Arik. The de Viennes believe in direct sourcing spices: visiting growing regions, spending time with growers, and developing personal relationships that last decades. In 2004, they officially opened their first spice shop in Montreal’s fantastic Jean Talon market– it’s since become a mecca for foodies from all over the world. I first visited in 2008 and have been buying and using their spices on a regular basis ever since that first exciting visit. They steadfastly maintain that they do nothing original, only facilitating the exchange of culinary common sense from one place to another. But, what they do is simply quite brilliant - by providing us with the finest quality ingredients, and their superb spice mixes, we can all experiment with unusual spices and recreate delicious recipes from around the world.