No table is complete without a set of salt and pepper shakers. Black pepper, the much-loved kick of flavor in this classic pairing, derives from the fruit of the pepper tree. These tiny, dark and mottled balls of spice are called peppercorns.
Originally grown in India, pepper is now cultivated in many different tropical regions. Holding the title of the world’s most traded spice, black pepper is present in countless dishes all across the globe. It offers a subtle heat in addition to its distinctive flavor, with the spiciness of the fruit deriving from the piperine chemical.
Pepper is one of the few spices for which it would be difficult to find a dish that it does not complement. From your scrambled eggs at breakfast, all the way through your pasta alfredo at dinner—black pepper is the all-around champion of the spice rack.