White Pepper. Indonesia generates a super high-quality pepper which is mainly grown in South and Western Bangka, an island in South Sumatra. Since 1498, White Pepper from Indonesia has been traded in the international market, and it was first exported through Muntok Port, so that it known as Muntok White Pepper. Bangka White Pepper is the the most demand for export market beside other type. White Pepper is milder and less complex than black pepper because it has a similar flavor and aroma. Sometimes the strong aroma of black pepper are not suitable for some people, they may use white pepper to add flavor to their dishes. White pepper is perfect for dishes that have light colors such as soup, mashed potato, and beef.
Piper Nigrum, a pepper plant which Black Pepper derives from and so does White Pepper. Both of the type of peppers are distinguished by the difference in the production process. White pepper is harvested when pepper berries are fully ripened in the tree, and then the yellow or red outer husk is removed by slow soaking in the water for about a week, which resulted in white peppercorn that is usually used as a spice. Meanwhile, black pepper is harvested before it is ripened or the fruits are still green and then it is just dried, which darkens the skin and gives a stronger flavor.
There are a couple of effective methods regarding to how White Pepper is processed. As mentioned in the previous paragraph, the husks or the skins of white pepper can be soaked off in the water. Another way is that the husks or the skins of the berries are washed out by leaving the water flow over the peppercorns for some times. The second method results in much cleaner product, even though both tastes are very similar. The last step following the removing of the skins or husks is drying the creamy white centers of the peppercorns.
With different processing, White Pepper is different from black pepper in terms of flavor and heat component. Some people describe white pepper as being spicier and fruitier than black pepper, yet less complex. However, some also say that it has slightly winey and a lot of earthy flavors, while others say it is a little bit smoky. There are even people that say the key distinction is the white pepper’s earthiness. Regardless of that, white pepper can release a bitter essence when overheated. Therefore, it’s better to add white pepper after the dish has been cooked.
In culinary and Kitchen field, some chefs use White Pepper as an alternative to black pepper in order to eliminate the black flecks or spots over the food for a more pleasing presentation. However, other chefs use white pepper for its complex yet subtle flavor. Overall, both of the type of peppers do have distinct tastes and looks, chefs use White Pepper for the dishes that highlight earthiness or light colored.