Long pepper (Piper longum), sometimes called Indian long pepper or pipli, is a flowering vine in the family Piperaceae, cultivated for its fruit, which is usually dried and used as a spice and seasoning.
Long pepper has a bit more heat than traditional black peppercorns, but its heat brings with it complex spice overtones and a mellow, woody base flavor. Beyond the heat, you may detect hints nutmeg, cinnamon, and ginger. While those might be thought of baking spices in the west, in other parts of the world such as India, they are the key spices in many spice blends, or masalas, used for savory purposes. Long Pepper pairs well with all sorts of meats, many vegetables, stews, even spicy, fruity dessert dish. While you can infuse its flavor by using it whole in a stew or slow roasted lamb dish, it typically is ground before using, much like black pepper, to bring out its essential oils and flavors. Long pepper can be used in most peppermills that grind black pepper. We suggest snapping the long pepper into smaller pieces first or using the heel of a chef’s knife to cut them into small coins before loading them into the mill.