Give a Strong, Tasty and Intense Edge to Food and Drink
Black pepper and cinnamon give a strong woody edge to food and drink that is intense and spicy. For over 2000 years, these two spices have been tasty preservatives for perishable foods and used, either accidentally or on purpose, as potent medicine. With wild honey (itself almost a panacea) to make the bitter plant remedies more palatable, we still have available a powerful legacy of pure and effective food from the days of our ancestors. It is expressed to perfection in the potent essential oils that are extracted with utmost care from the leaves, flowers, roots and bark of plants. It is the essential "oil", the plants’ life blood, which is the delicious, often therapeutic, agent in earth’s entire flora.
Black pepper (Piper nigrum) was found in the mummified remains of Ramses II, indicating that these remarkable berries’ preserving ability was valued highly in the ancient world. Piper nigrum comes from Egypt today as well as from Madagascar and India.
Indian monks consume several black peppercorns a day to maintain their incredible stamina and energy levels — a tonic at once comforting and stimulating for persons of any region.
Black pepper essential oil is particularly delectable when enjoyed as a sparing condiment added to liquids — stimulating digestive secretions essential to the utilization of food. Black pepper owes its legendary prowess to the ability to transport oxygen quickly and efficiently through the cell wall while simultaneously nudging an entire endocrine (hormone) system to its optimum performance — in minutes. Of course, when eating is pleasant and digestion is efficient, a broad array of painful and irregular symptoms can disappear.
Cinnamon (Cinnamomum verum) has been a delicious and nutritious part of human diet from ancient through modern times. Sri Lanka has produced cinnamonum verum bark for over 2000 years, and still does today along with Madagascar and India.
Nearly 30 years ago, University of Cairo studies found that pathogenic micro-organisms cannot live in the presence of cinnamon oil. Dispersed throughout a room by means of a cool air diffuser, it is the ultimate in sanitizing, deodorizing, mood mending, and reviving aroma alone or in combination with other spice oils — like Young Living Essential Oils’ Thieves blend — and with citrus oils like tangerine and lemon.
- Cinnamon takes the triple-crown in ability to neutralize gut infections — bacterial, viral, and fungal. (Reference)
- Cinnamon compares with penicillin and ampicillin in neutralizing E. coli and Staph aureus infections — both getting bad press these days for their contamination of the public food supply. Note: This is accomplished without damage to the beneficial intestinal flora that attends antibiotic therapy.
- Cinnamon works intricately in glucose metabolism assisting insulin utilization (helps diabetics).
- Bloat, cramps, colic are relieved with its fast carminative (anti-gas) digestive action.
- The autonomic nervous system particularly benefits from cinnamon’s soothing and calming quality.
- All the spice oils help to keep the circulatory system free flowing and unstuck.
- Cinnamon is known from ancient times as a sexual stimulant.
- Cinnamon improves visual and cognitive motor skills, perhaps explaining its reputation as a wealth-bringer.
The ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) is a method for measuring the ability of a food to attract and neutralize oxygen radicals which are responsible for aging and chronic disease. Cinnamon is a whopping 103,448 — five times greater than that from any fruit or other food you can name.
How to Cook with Pure Essential Oils
I have been cooking with an FDA GRAS (Generally Regarded As Safe) essential oil of Piper nigrum that I buy from Young Living Essential Oils. A single drop does a lot, so the 5ml vial lasts in the spice cabinet unless you’re cooking for a large group all the time or decide to slather the bottoms of your feet to help your body cope with a host of common ailments that hot pepper oils of all types are said to affect.
I recommend eating Piper nigrum essential oil if you are even mildly fond of pepper. Its bite is gently pungent with lasting flavor, and do take care to dilute it considerably. In cooking with essential oils, more is definitely not better.
- Adding 1-3 drops in any pot of soup or stew a little before serving is a place to start experimenting.
- Use a drop or two in a quart of unflavored kefir (your own or organic, store-bought) or other cultured milk along with ½ tsp. of Himalayan Crystal Salt and whisk briskly. The flavors can mellow for as long as you wish in the ‘fridge or out — easy and tasty to serve in a small wine glass for a unique savor that perfectly complements any food. I am confident in the therapeutic value of my own raw milk kefir seasoned this way, and I take a sipping bottle along as unrefrigerated road food when I am out and about.
- Black pepper oil is a great addition to homemade salad dressings, sauces, gravies, cream soups and mashed vegetables — it mixes best with oil-based foods because it is lipid soluble (disperses in fat). Let your tastability go wild — experiment. Post your discoveries here on WWOF.
I use real cinnamon essential oil in all my recipes that call for the powdered bark.
- A drop can be added to any egg mixture destined for cake or bread
- A drop of cinnamon perks up any flavor of raw dairy or other smoothie.
- 1 drop in an organic cocoa and maple syrup paste mixed with raw cream in my morning coffee is a fine breakfast when paired with soaked raw almonds.
- Cinnamon as well as coriander and cardamom with an organic sweetener in warmed unprocessed (raw) milk is the perfect snack.
- For flavoring gingerbread and cookies, my own specialty, I use 2 drops of cinnamon essential oil per recipe PLUS a teaspoon of the powder along with 2 tablespoons of freshly grated ginger root. Ginger essential oil is rewarding but tricky to use well, so wait until you’ve tried a few of the more "forgiving" oils before branching out with it and certain herbal oils like basil, oregano, thyme and marjoram.
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