Posts Tagged ‘Food’

peppercorns 2Black pepper is one of the more common spices in the world today. It is a basic ingredient in most meat and savory dishes around the globe. The fruit grows on a dark green climbing vine. Its’ white flowers form spikes that develop into small, green berries. The fruits or peppercorns as they are called turn red as they ripen. Peppers are some of the oldest spices in the world, originating in India at least 4000 years ago. In Sanskrit, India’s oldest language the spice was referred to as pippeli. By the time Latin was developed the word was translated to piper, eventually becoming Pepper in the English language.

As people traveled small batches of pepper trickled into the Mediterranean area. Initially brought over by the Arabs who bought spices from trade caravans they soon ended up in Europe. As a unique trait pepper has an unmistakably strong smell. Europeans welcomed its advent, by then it was the most expensive spice ever sold in the world .By 400 B.C. ancient Rome was sold out on pepper. The spice was employed both as medicine and as a flavoring in food. Its lucrative nature prompted the Roman Emperor Domitian to build a spice market in the Roman Forum around A.D. 90. He named the primary road leading into the market Via Piperatica or Pepper Way.

The world’s largest importer of pepper is the United States. Annual figures for the worlds pepper market is about 500 million dollars. Peppers are used in many dishes including stews, soups pickles and marinades, you name it the list is exhaustive. People use it to sprinkle and flavor their foods. A meat lover especially of the juicy steak knows that the black peppercorn enhances their food. Pepper came to the Caribbean via the slave trade, eventually becoming a small cash crop on certain islands.

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Stale beer sits stagnant and unwanted now/

In cups, bottles and cans on the counter.

Evidence of the previous night’s encounter

She always hates the morning after

Righting a chair that was upended.

It‘s only nine and her white chef’s hat is already askew

Her shoe has walked into another sticky mess

If her morning had started off well

The scene before her would perhaps be more appealing to say the least (it’s not like she hasn’t seen it before) like ten times, but

Her two kids were ill last night and she missed the bus

She couldn’t find her favorite lipstick/plush violet

Her mother agreed to watch the kids / can she talk? Whew!

I left her talking about her trip to Macy‘s the other day.

Heavy curtains from a bygone era

Keeps the weak sunlight at bay.

She doesn’t worry about the patrons now

They always come after, at lunch and later.

She has asked herself many TIMES WHY SHE BOTHERS?

Her lips painted a bright crimson sneers in anger

It’s in these moments she’d wished she’d completed her law degree.

By Joszann St.John


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Huge fat snowflakes float by an open window

On their way down to the hard frozen ground.

Each unique and individually distinct

They pile unto each other.

Inside the temple silence is palpable

Compelling the meditative perspective.

On a crude wooden table sits two cups

Steam rising from their concave center.

A couple of tanned, weathered, leathery hands

Reach simultaneously for the tea.

Brewed strong, the scent permeates the entire room

And wards of the chill of the cold mountain air.


By Joszann St. John

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