The Discovery of Pink Peppercorn
Updated: Jul 21, 2020
In a far away land also known as Ottawa, Canada at a little known spot named Bulk Barn, I made a discovery. I wasn't sure what to expect. Although I had never tasted a pink peppercorn before, I knew them immediately when I saw them.
They tasted immediately floral, but not as spicy as you'd expect from the name. I may or may not have popped a couple in my mouth before committing to the $2.16 purchase. I tend to get myself into a little trouble with spices. I buy and buy and don't always know what to do with them. This time... was no different. I spent the remaining days of my Canadian vacation brainstorming (as I always do).
Upon my return to Houston, I settled on using them to pickle red onions. I pulled out my mortar and pestle to grind up some kosher salt, white sugar, pink peppercorns, black peppercorn and mustard seeds. I threw the mixture into a bowl of hot red wine vinegar atop the thinly sliced red onions (courtesy of my beautiful mandoline). I'd say that it was a great application of the spice. This were perfect with my cornmeal crusted tilapia fish tacos!
My second application came as a whim. I invited my parents over to eat my second-ever homemade ravioli. The first attempt was not as great a success although I thought so at the time! We stuffed the ravioli with ricotta, lemon zest, grated parmesan, and green pea puree using a large tip piping bag. We added the second layer of ravioli, stamped them out with my new circular ravioli stamp and boiled them for 3 minutes. In a large, shallow pot, I tossed the finished ravioli with butter, lemon, extra cheese, lobster tails (because why not?), fresh peas, a drizzle of olive oil and a generous handful of pink peppercorn. The addition of the pink peppercorn was the single smartest thing. I suddenly looked like a Michelin-Starred chef.. and I'm not complaining.
P.S. Thanks to my parents for always knowing and expecting to get to work in the kitchen every time I invite them over. No one eats for free at my house ;)
With Mommy & Daddy