Korarima is the seed of the plant of the same name, which is called corrorima in Ethiopia. It is also called 'false cardamom'. It is an essential component of famous Ethiopian spice mixtures such as berbere and mitmata.
The korarima plant belongs to the genus Aframomum, which has about fifty species that all grow on the African continent. Like mbongo and paradise corn, it is gingerish. Like all plants in the ginger family, the plant grows in a warm, moist environment and likes some shade. Naturally korarima occurs at a height of 1. 700-2. 000 meters.
The plant grows to about two meters high and has elongated and pointed leaves, like bamboo. Trumpet-like flowers form close to the ground from January to September, appearing to come straight out of the ground. They are on stalks on the underground rhizome.
The white to light purple flowers often fall off on the same day they appear, to make way for large reddish-brown pods. The moment at which this happens differs per location. For example, the flowering period in Kefa in Ethiopia is from June to July. The pods ripen there in the months of September and October.
It takes three years before a plant produces a usable harvest. From then on, the plant can be harvested four years in a row. The pods are picked when ripe. They contain red-brown seeds in a jelly-like liquid. Only a modest part is sold fresh, part is left to dry in the sun.
Korarima is widely available in markets in the Horn of Africa where it is quite expensive compared to other spices and herbs. Korarima is a sought-after spice in West African cuisine, o. a in Cameroon and Senegal. Related spices are corn of paradise (Aframomum melegueta) and Madagascar cardamom (Aframomum angustifolium). The first is quite common, the second very rare.
Odor and taste
In korarima, the flavors of green and great (violet) cardamom are united. Korarima is slightly sweeter than green cardamom and, like black cardamom, has a menthol aroma. The aroma is otherwise typified as that of nutmeg, hence the alternative name nutmeg-cardamom.
The seeds contain 1-2% essential oil, which contains the main flavor components
- alpha-humulene, (31.3%), 'hoppy' as in hops
- humulene oxide (26.4%),
- caryophyllene oxide (17. 9%), spicy and woody, like cinnamon and cloves
- beta-caryophyllene (8.5%), sweetish, woody, also in cloves, and
- linalool (5.7%), responsible for the scents of rosewood and coriander
Korarima is less peppery than the related paradise grain (Aframomum melegueta). The pungency comes from zingerone, -paradol, -gingerol and -gingerol, each characteristic of the fruits of plants in the Aframomum genus and the ginger family in general.
Except in combination with other spices in spice mixtures such as berbere and mitmata, a mixture of bird's eye chili, korarima and cloves. In Ethiopia, Korarima is used both fresh and dried in wots, in numerous sauces, such as chow, but also as a seasoning in (Ethiopian) coffee, tea and bread. Other applications are:
- niter kibbeh (spiced butter),
- kitfo, raw minced meat with mitmata,
- shirowat, a puree of chickpea flour and
- maafe, West African chicken in peanut sauce
Grind or mortar the seeds shortly before use, after briefly roasting them.
- 100% seeds of Aframomum corrorima
- origin: Ethiopia
- available in glass, pouch and test tube
- glass jar contains 60 grams
- standup pouches with a content of up to 30 to 500 grams
- available in 10 ml test tube
- larger quantities on request
- the jar is available in a tasteful gift box, consisting of a cube box filled with black tissue paper
- for an overview of our gift packaging, please refer to the category gift packaging
- grind the korarima at the last minute to maximize the aroma - preferably roast briefly first
- keep korarima in closed packaging
- preferably store in a dark, dry and cool place
- best before November 2025 (11/25)
- this best before date is an indication