The Black Pepper Secret: 5 tips for sweet & savoury surprises

15 May 2018 | Schwartz
The Black Pepper Secret

There’s no doubt about it, black pepper is the unsung hero of the herb and spice rack. But while it maintains a steady presence bringing extra depth to many a recipe, it’s much more than salt’s seasoning sidekick. Here, we tell you how to use a touch of black pepper to bring a pop to sweet dishes, or vary your savoury recipes with the punch of coarse ground peppercorns.

1. Keep it simple

Keep it simple

If you’ve ever crunched into a peppercorn you’ll know that they’re more than just fiery pods of heat - they also have a warming aroma that brings out the complex taste layers of many foods. Sweet or savoury, the subtle flavour of Coarse Ground Black Pepper is perfect paired with just about any ingredient. We love a simple sprinkle in the batter of a lemon drizzle, or a quick twist added to a sweet fruit ice lolly before it goes in the freezer. It’s a good idea to invest in high quality peppercorns that have been matured for around six months – that way, you can ensure that distinct, colourful aroma every time.

2. Pair black pepper with fruit for winning dessert recipes

Pair black pepper with fruit for winning dessert recipes

Don’t have time to plan dessert before the dinner party? There’s nothing more decadent than seasonal fruit simply brought to life with a little black pepper - or even a light fruit cake that you can make ahead of time. And if sweet and spicy sounds like a delicious combination, then you’re sure to find cold ice cream and warming heat is a winner too. These citrus and black pepper ice cream shots are a surprising palate-cleanser to end to any meal.

3. Break up rich sauces and creams

Break up rich sauces and creams

Ooh we all love treating ourselves to a creamy sauce (of both the sweet and savoury variety!) - but how do you make sure you don’t fall into a food coma halfway through the course? The trick is to balance out those heavy textures and flavours with a lighter pop on the palette – enter, clever spicing. We love coarse ground pepper as it adds a subtle texture to thick dressings, such as this mascarpone sauce which is perfect for chicken dishes, and balances out sweeter dessert recipes that call for a hearty dollop of double cream.

4. Enhance seasonal flavours

Enhance seasonal flavours

When you have the perfect cut of seasonal lamb, ripe peaches or aromatic greens, the last thing you should be doing is hiding their natural taste. But a pinch of salt and pepper is the perfect way to elevate those flavours to whole new levels. We love this salmon fillet recipe with a light Cajun marinade; a crack or two of ground black pepper really enhances the produce. Let the fish take centre stage with a simple accompaniment of seasonal leaves.

5. Go coarse for texture

Go coarse for texture

So we know that pepper is the perfect spice for bringing out an ingredient’s natural flavour, but it’s also the perfect way to add a little texture to your dish. Using Coarse Ground Black Pepper as a meat rub not only tastes amazing, it’ll help to add plenty of texture as well. Simply coat your choice of protein with a light oil or marinade to help stick the pepper, then pop it into the oven or onto the barbecue for a deliciously crispy grill or bake. This Mediterranean-inspired tray baked lamb steak recipe is the perfect dish for a spring surprise.

Ready to enhance the flavour of just about any dish? Schwartz Black Pepper is sourced from expert growers around the world, and always matured for up to six months before harvesting for the best flavour. You’ll find everything you need in our range of salt and pepper.