Selim (cani pepper)
Selim (cani pepper)
Selim pepper, also called selim kani or kani pepper. It is the dried fruit of a tree related to the custard apple. It is therefore not a 'real pepper'. The taste is described as a marriage between a cube pepper and nutmeg.
This (pseudo)pepper from Senegal is a member of the soursop family (Annonaceae). Selim pepper was also in Europe, until the large-scale import of black pepper in the 16th century a common pepper known as Negro pepper or Moorish pepper.
The tree on which the pepper grows is the Xylopia, a tropical tree that easily reaches 20 meters in height. Xylopia means 'bitter wood', a bitterness that ensures that the wood of the tree is termite-free and can be used as construction wood. You can also taste this bitterness in the peppers, albeit to a modest extent.
Selim pepper grows wild in the rainforest, and is not fertilized or watered. Harvesting is done twice a year. Immediately after harvesting, the still green fruits, stem and all, are placed in the sun to dry. Only after drying is the stem of the then dark brown fruit removed. Each fruit contains five to eight seeds, which look a bit like kidney beans.
Selim pepper, also known as Guinea pepper, has many, many names on the African continent, including uda hwentia or kimba pepper. In African and especially Nigerian cuisine, not only the seed but also the whole dried fruit is used. This is bound together with other herbs in a 'bouquet garni' that is used in stews. The hairdo has a rosewood scent, and also has lavender and coriander aromas.
Odor and taste
The seeds contain volatile oils that provide the aromas of eucalyptus and nutmeg, which are released as soon as the seeds are ground. They have a slightly bitter taste as mentioned. Selim pepper is (very) rich in vitamin A.
- sabinene, responsible for the woody, camphor-like flavor of black pepper and nutmeg, among others
- α- and β-pinene, woody pine scent, as in cumin, pine (pine cone), juniper and hemp,
- β-phellandrene, mint, turpentine,
- 1,8-cineole, eucalyptol, the refreshing taste of mint
- terpine-4-ol, woody and peppery aroma
- geranyl acetate, responsible for the rose, lavender scent.
The pod-shaped fruit is very fibrous and is therefore not eaten itself. To 'liberate' the seeds and use only the least bitter part of the selim pepper, briefly hold the whole fruit over an open fire (flame). Let him cool down. Squeeze or pick the seeds out of the capsule, then grind them.
Selim is used in (African) stews and in roasted form for the preparation of Touba coffee. Selim is delicious in combination with goat meat!
- 100% berries of the Xylopia aethiopica
- origin: Senegal
- available in glass and pouch (no test tubes)
- glass jar contains 45 grams
- stand-up pouches with a content of up to 30 to 250 grams
- 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
- separate the seeds and the 'pods', and tie the latter together for easy removal at the end of a preparation
- keep your selim pepper in closed packaging
- preferably store in a dark, dry and cool place
- best before June 2026 (06/26)
- this expiration date is an indication