What are capers?
What are capers?
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** What are capers? **
By Peggy Trowbridge Filippone, About.com Guide
"what are capers, recipes, condiment, receipts"
© 2008 Peggy Trowbridge Filippone, licensed to About.com, Inc.
*Question: *What are capers?
What do capers look and taste like?
*Answer: *Capers are the unripened flower buds of /Capparis spinosa/, a
prickly, perennial plant which is native to the Mediterranean and some
parts of Asia. Their use dates back to more than 1200 B.C.E. where they are
mentioned as a food in the Sumerian cuneiform /Gilgamesh/, an ancient
retelling of a great flood and ark legend.
After the buds are harvested, they are dried in the sun, then pickled in
*vinegar*, brine, *wine* or *salt*. The curing brings out their tangy
lemony flavor, much the same as green *olives*.
The size of the buds range from tiny (about the size of a baby petite green
pea) up to the size of a small olive. The smallest variety from the South
of France, called /nonpareil/, is the most prized and comes with an equally
notable price-tag. Larger capers are stronger in flavor and less aromatic.
Much of the expense comes from labor costs since the caper buds are picked
by hand. Try making your own *Poor Man's Capers* at home from *nasturtium*
Capers have long been a favorite in the Mediterranean region. The small,
green herb buds lend a piquant sour and salty flavor to salads, dressings,
sauces, vegetables and a variety of main dishes.
-More about Capers:-
• *What are capers?*
• *Caper Cooking Tips and Poison Warning*
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