diemen pepper


Exotic spice from a very southern south sea island



Suggestions for enjoying Tasmanian native pepperberries

• Store Pepperberries in a closed glass jar or they will absorb moisture from the air. If they become slightly soft, a few minutes on a shallow tray in a low oven (<100°C) will save your grinder from ‘clogging up’.

• Tasmanian Pepper is best used towards the end of cooking, (some of the flavours can be lost at prolonged high temperatures – especially frying and baking).

• A small bowl of ‘cracked’ pepperberries on the table - pinch over soups and sauces – or keep a second grinder filled with Tasmanian Pepper berries.

• Pepperberries will bleed a soft pink colour into marinades or pickle solutions, pale sauces and yoghurt.

• Include crushed pepperberries in your favourite Dukkah

• Tasty salad dressing - soak dried berries in warm vinegar overnight, and combine with your favourite oil and spices.

• Dry Pepperberry Rub: Blend 2 teaspoons each of crushed pepperberries, seasalt, brown sugar and garlic powder with half a cup paprika, and 2 tablespoons dried, rubbed oregano. Store in an airtight container. Rub firmly into meat at least 30 mins before grilling or BBQ.

• Adult Icecream: Blend finely milled pepperberries into a softened vanillabean icecream and refreeze before serving. Adjust to taste, (remembering that flavor is less noticeable in frozen food).




Rotalini di Pollo and Diemen Pepper

Makes about 10 – 12 small rolls
2 double chicken breasts,
Fine slices of proscuitto crudo (or mild pancetta)
1 tsp. Tasmanian Pepperberries (dried and ground)
Fine slices of orange (navel)
Salt to taste
1 tablespoon of sesame seeds (toasted)
About 60 gr of butter
A good dash of beer or dry white wine
Chopped parsley to garnish

Cut chicken into pieces about 4 x 4 cm and 1cm thick (slice if necessary)
On each piece sprinkle salt, crushed Tasmanian pepper, and top with a slice of proscuitto. Roll each piece up and secure with toothpicks. Melt the butter in a heavy pan and heat till it begins to bubble. Add rotalini, and cook through, adding wine or beer when half cooked. Remove from pan and add a small slice of orange to spike.
Arrange on plate, sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and chopped parsley.


Pepperberry Brioche

30g dried Yeast
60g sugar
300ml Lukewarm milk
750g g strong flour
1/2 tsp salt
6 egg yolks
185g unsalted butter - very soft
2 tsp (6 -7 g) ground Pepperberry

Mix and allow to prove in a warm place Sieve flour. Add all the ingredients with the milk mixture into a large mixing bowl. Mix on low speed for 5-8 mins to form a smooth dough. Allow to prove covered for 20 min. in a warm place.
Form into traditional brioche shapes or a loaf.
Prove again to double the size. Brush with egg wash if desired. Bake @ 180o C for 20 mins.


Garlic and Diemen Pepper Cream
(Blue Gum Fine Foods)
4 Garlic cloves
600ml Olive oil
3 Egg yolks
5g fresh mountain pepper or 3g dried berries soaked for 30min.
200ml champagne vinegar
10g chopped lemon basil
Salt to taste

Chop garlic and combine with pepper. Whisk into egg yolks with vinegar, as for mayonnaise, and drizzle oil in a stream, till all incorporated. Season with lemon basil and salt to taste.


Diemen Pepper Butter Sauce
(Australian Native Fine Foods)

Reduce chicken, veal or fish stock to a 'jus'. Remove from heat and add 5g ground pepper leaf per litre of reduced stock. Allow to infuse 30 secs. Then finish the reduced stock with cold butter. Note: Pepperberries may also be used (ground), although the effect of the burgundy colour of the berries is more effective in a white or cream sauce.


Sweet Potato Gnocchi with pepper, prosciutto and parmesan sauce
(Anon., Southern Bushfood Association. Magazine No 5)

750g sweet potatoes, steamed, chopped, mashed and cooled.
3 tsp. Ground Diemen Pepper leaf
3 medium. eggs, lightly beaten
2 cups plain flour

Pepper, prosciutto and parmesan sauce
1 cup cream
1 tsp. Ground Diemen Pepper
2 tblsp unsalted butter
6 thin slices prosciutto
100g freshly shaved parmesan

To make the gnocchi, mix ingredients thoroughly, forming a firm dough, adding flour or a little water if required. Turn out onto a floured board and knead for 2 -3 minutes. Divide into 4, roll each into a long sausage and cut into 1 inch slices. From these into your favourite gnocchi shape, dust with flour and set aside. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and gently drop in the gnocchi. Immediately they rise to the surface, remove them with a slotted spoon and place in a shallow baking dish.

To make the sauce, bring the cream to the boil in a small saucepan, add the pepper and remove from the heat. Whisk in the butter. Pour the mixture over the cooked gnocchi, and sprinkle shaved parmesan and prosciutto evenly over the surface. Place in a preheated (370¡F) oven for 10 minutes then serve immediately.