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what is it?

Capers pack big flavor in a tiny package. These little spheres are the flower buds of a prickly shrub that grows all over the Mediterranean. Eaten raw, capers are unpalatably bitter, but once cured in a vinegar brine or in salt, they develop an intense flavor that is all at once salty, sour, herbal, and slightly medicinal. If the buds are allowed to blossom and go to seed, they become caper berries, which are also packed in brine and can be added to salads or eaten out of hand like olives.

Capers come vinegar-brined or salt-packed. Brined capers have the advantage of an almost indefinite shelf life, but the vinegar sharpens their flavor. Salted capers have a pure flavor, but they don't last as long because the salt eventually pulls out all their moisture. Capers taste especially good with fish and other foods that tend to be oily or rich.

how to choose:

Capers come in a range of sizes. The smallest size (nonpareil) is said by some to be the best; others prefer larger capers for their bolder, more interesting flavor. What you choose is a matter of personal taste and what you can find at your market. For salt-packed capers, look for clean white salt; yellowing salt is a sign of age.

how to prep:

Rinse brined capers before using. Salt-packed capers are too salty to be eaten straight from the jar; soak them in cool water for about 15 minutes and rinse in several changes of water. If the capers are large, you can chop them roughly unless you want a big burst of caper flavor. For an unusual garnish or salad addition, pat capers dry and then lightly fry them in a little olive oil. They'll get crisp and open up like the little flowers they are.

how to store:

All capers should be refrigerated after opening.

Comments (18)

jugornot writes: Thanks for the information, found the discretion of Capers very interesting and very informative. Hope to be using Capers in my next recipe. Posted: 2:04 pm on February 21st

lanadavison writes: Great job Posted: 3:45 am on November 21st

ShawnDavis writes: Excellent dish Posted: 6:03 am on November 7th

Ashtonjames writes: amazing Posted: 12:20 pm on February 26th

paulmennon writes: Very Nice Posted: 10:34 am on February 2nd

alliancelimo writes: mind blowing Posted: 4:21 am on January 28th

DarylLee1 writes: great Posted: 1:14 am on January 13th

mickysingh writes: very nice Posted: 6:42 am on October 21st

prophc writes: too good Posted: 4:42 am on October 12th

BrianKelly writes: gud work Posted: 3:55 am on August 22nd

SammyWebster writes: looking great Posted: 5:08 am on August 21st

Austin_Ayword writes: it is very helpful Posted: 5:15 am on July 9th

johan21 writes: nice Posted: 2:25 am on July 6th

Brettlii writes: awesome Posted: 4:53 am on July 3rd

nickmerce writes: greattt Posted: 2:38 am on April 30th

jamelee writes: agree with chucke2333 Posted: 1:58 am on March 20th

johnsonpaul writes: very nice Posted: 12:46 am on March 11th

chucke2333 writes: This was very helpful didn't know what capers were. Posted: 12:36 pm on March 25th

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