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A What is a caper

A What is a caper

What is a caper

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Capers come from a prickly bush called capparis spinosa that grows wild across the Mediterranean and parts of Asia. The capers we see in the grocery store are the un-ripened green flower buds of the plant. Once they’re picked, the immature buds are dried and then preserved. Capers are either cured in salt or pickled in brine, which is what gives capers their trademark savory, briny flavor profile.

BUD

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If the caper isn’t harvested as an immature bud, it grows into a caperberry. A caperberry is about the same size as a small olive and has a long stem. Caperberries also have small, kiwi-like seeds inside. Their larger size makes them softer in texture than capers, and they don’t have the same piquancy, so they shouldn’t be used interchangeably in recipes that call for capers. Like capers, caperberries are pickled; try adding them to an antipasto platter or to garnish savory cocktails like Bloody Marys. Capers are the immature, unripened, green flower buds of the caper bush (Capparis spinosa or Capparis inermis). The plant is cultivated in Italy, Morocco, and Spain, as well as Asia and Australia. It's most often associated with Mediterranean cuisines, but enjoyed worldwide. Brined or dried, the caper is valued for the burst of flavor it gives to dishes. It adds texture and tanginess to a great variety of recipes, including fish dishes, pasta, stews, and sauces.

The curing brings out the tangy lemon-like flavor, which is similar to green olives.Capers have long been a favorite in the Mediterranean region. They are well-known for being a star ingredient in the Italian recipes chicken piccata and pasta puttanesca. The French add them to skate meunier with browned butter and they're an essential ingredient for a number of Spanish tapas. In India, the fruits and buds of the plant are pickled. In the U.S., they're used to garnish and add acid to a New York-style bagel with nova lox and cream cheese. (Source: www.thespruceeats.com)

USE

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This back-pocket pasta dish comes together quickly using pantry staples such as dried pasta, canned tuna, olives and capers. The capers and olives are fried with toasted garlic and red pepper flakes, then simmered with crushed tomatoes and their juices to create a savory sauce that makes a fine match for oil-packed tuna.

The caper is a prickly perennial plant native to the Mediterranean and some parts of Asia. Its use dates back to 2,000 B.C. where it's mentioned as a food in the Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh. To turn the unripened bud into the salty green pea-sized ball, it is dried in the sun and then pickled in vinegar, brine, wine, or salt. The curing brings out the tangy lemon-like flavor, which is similar to green olives. (Source: www.thespruceeats.com)

 

 

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