Indian spices and condiments are known for their richness of flavour and various health benefits. These ingredients have risen in popularity around the globe. And scientific studies reaffirm the traditional wisdom about the benefits of these spices. However, unchecked adulteration of these spices can often be a problem. Black pepper is an ingredient that is integral to Indian cuisine. But did you know that it can be easily adulterated? You don’t want to buy and consume adulterated black pepper. But how do you understand the difference between pure black pepper and an adulterated version of it?
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has a solution. Their official Instagram handle reveals how black pepper is usually adulterated and ways to spot it. Their post was captioned, “Detecting Blackberries Adulteration in Black Pepper.”
Mostly, black pepper can be mixed with blackberries. To detect it, FSSAI suggests a simple test. All you need to do is take a small quantity of black pepper. Place it on a tabletop. Press or try to crush this quantity with your finger or thumb. The unadulterated pepper will not break easily. But if the bunch is adulterated, you’ll be able to crush a few of them. The ones crushed will turn out to be light-hued blackberries that have been mixed with the black pepper.
Here’s the FSSAI video that explains the process:
Earlier, FSSAI posted a video that can help differentiate between normal red chilli powder and adulterated chilli powder. The common adulterants mixed with red chilli powder are brick powder, sand or talcum powder. FSSAI suggests another easy test for this. Take a glass of water. Add a teaspoon of red chilli powder into it. Let it settle down for a while. Then, take the residue in your palm and rub it with your finger. If you feel any grittiness, the powder is likely to be adulterated with brick powder or sand. If the residue feels very smooth and soapy, there are chances that the powder has been mixed with soapstone.
Watch this video to understand the process of testing red chilli powder for adulteration:
Distinguishing between pure spices and adulterated versions is very important, as it helps us eat the purest version of the food and maintain good health.