Pepper and its piperine extract have many virtues. Over and above its gastronomic and flavour qualities, the use of pepper in cooking not only enhances the taste of dishes but also helps to reduce the use of salt, whose consumption is strongly discouraged by cardiologists.
Since ancient times, pepper has been recognised for its medicinal qualities, as demonstrated by many recent medical studies. It is good for digestion and helps to prevent and combat various forms of cancers (including breast cancer when it is combined with curcumin). It has effective antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It is also an antidepressant and has aphrodisiac qualities. We advise you to enjoy pepper without restraint.
THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF PEPPER
Pepper berries all grow on the same plant, but are harvested or processed at different stages of maturity. Like wine, a good pepper must not be mixed with others (just as you wouldn’t mix red wine and white wine in the same glass). You will taste and appreciate better the characteristic aromas of each colour of pepper.
From September, bunches of pepper start to develop on the plant. They all have an intense green colour and grow over the months before starting to mature in January. Kep crab stir-fried in green pepper is one of the region’s must-eat traditional gourmet meals.
La Plantation has created a new exclusive product: Salted Kampot Pepper. Harvested by hand before maturity, the green peppercorns undergo a fermentation process that enhances all their flavor. The crispness of the corn and the intense explosion of fresh pepper
flavors in the mouth make this salted pepper a unique product you can keep for one year.
From January, the ripe bunches are harvested by hand. They are then seeded, washed and sun-dried for 2 to 3 days.
The Kampot black pepper develops strong and delicate aromas. Its taste is very intense and mild at the same time, with hints of eucalyptus and fresh mint. It complements grilled meats and fish perfectly. It is best not to cook pepper. Instead it should be milled freshly on the plate.
At the height of the dry season, towards the month of March, the peppercorns ripen on the vine, turning from yellow to red. Harvested by hand at full maturity, the peppercorns are then washed and sun-dried.
The Kampot red pepper is the region’s flagship product. It develops powerful fruity aromas. Its unique taste, less spicy than the black pepper, has sweet notes of red fruit and honey.
It enhances and flavours your dishes and desserts. Its delicate aroma develops in particular when added to strawberries and pears.
White pepper is the result of the transformation of red pepper. Its outer coat is removed by soaking it only for 1 night. The Kampot white pepper develops a powerful bouquet and delicate aromas. Its intense, spicy taste conceals hints of fresh herbs and lemon.
The Kampot red and white peppers are extremely rare peppers because of the difficulty in harvesting them at the right moment at full maturity and the need to have a large enough workforce to pick these peppercorns by hand. The Kampot region is one of the few regions to produce white pepper from red pepper.
Pepper plants are propagated by cuttings. They come from plantations existing exclusively in the territory covered by the PGI. To comply with the PGI specifications, two varieties of pepper trees can be planted in the region: Kamchay and Lampong, usually called “big leaves and small leaves”. The plants grow rapidly along a 4-metre-tall wooden pole. Attaching the stem of the pepper along the pole using natural filaments made from wood bark is a meticulous task.
The soil is worked daily by the farmers in order to monitor the development and good health of each vine. Depending on the seasons, the work carried out consists of weeding, hoeing, adding fresh soil and natural fertilizer, mainly dried cow dung or bat guano mixed in the soil. La Plantation’s Kampot pepper has been certified organic by Ecocert.
Water is very important for pepper plantations. It is essential to install water reservoirs on the plantation in order to collect rain water during the rainy season, from June to October. This can be used to water each pepper vine manually once or twice a week during the dry season.
CONTROL OF INSECTS
To fight against insects or diseases, we have developed our own natural pesticide formula with local roots and plants. This repulsive potion is sprayed on individual trees when needed.