Plant Magazine of Botanical-online September 2017

Natural remedies

Cubed or tailed pepper properties

CUBED OR TAILED PEPPER PROPERTIES

Common English Name: Cubeb, Kubeben pepper, tailed pepper.

- Spanish: Cubeba, pimienta Cubeba, cordoncillo, pimienta de cola, pimienta de Java.
- Catalan: pebre cubeba
- German: Kubeben-Pfeffer, Schwanz-Pfeffer
- French: cub�be, Poivre to Queue

Scientific name: Piper cubeba L.
Taxonomic synonym: Cubeba officinalis.

Family: Piperaceae

Habitat: plant native to Indonesia, the region of Java and Maluku. At present, the Cubeba is grown primarily in Southeast Asia, the region of Indonesia. The cubeba is a vine or creeper normally cultivated with coffee trees.

It is a very similar plant to black pepper (Piper nigrum) but differs from it because of its stalked fruit
. This feature also gives it the name "tailed pepper", where "tail" is the colloquial term to describe the petiole of the fruit.

Botanical description of cubeba pepper

Cubeba pepper (Piper cubeba) is a perennial vine up to 6 meters high. It has essential oils in leaves and seeds, giving off a strong fragrance.

Leaves petiolate, round or heart-shaped (unlike what other Piper), 2.5-5 cm long. The inflorescence is a pedunculated flower spike, opposed to the leaves, that comes from the notes of the main stems.

Yellowish green flowers, arranged in spiral along the spine. Flowers are sessile but its fruit is stalked at maturity.

The cubeb pepper fruit is a drupe with fleshy mesocarp, about 4 millimeters in diameter and brownish-gray. It is bitter and spicy. The fruit, unlike the fruits of Piper species, is stalked. The stalk of the fruit is about 6 mm. It has a brown crust with prominent veins which form a lattice on the entire surface. Inside it reserves a white seed, oily and papyraceous with a strong odor. It tastes bitter and aromatic.

Cubeba pepper has not be confused with the false cubeba (P. crassipes), commonly used to adulterate Cubeba aromatic mixtures.

piper

Composition of pepper cubeba

- Resinoids

- Monoterpenes: cubenene, levo-cineole, thujene, phellandrene, pinene, delta-cadinene.

- Alcohol terpenes: cubenol,, cadinol, ledol.

- Sesquiterpenes: aromadendrene, bisabolene, beta-caryophyllene, calamenen, humulene.

- Phenylpropanes: myrcene, eugenol, safrole, sabinol.

- Cubebin: responsible for the medicinal properties of the cubeba. Substance discovered in 1839 by Eug�ne Soubeiran. The oil containing 1% of cubeic acid and about 6% resin.

Properties of pepper cubeba

It was formerly a widely used spice, although, due to its bitter taste, it possibly fell into disuse confusing it with a shoddy pepper.

It has been attributed with the following medicinal properties:

- Diuretic

- Stimulant

- Gonorrhea

- Indigestion

- Stimulant

Pepper cubeda properties are due to its aromatic components and resins. Mainly, it has been effective in stimulating the secretions of pulmonary and urinary apparatus.

- The main medicinal uses for cubeba relate with genitourinary infections such as remedies for gonorrhea,, cystitis, urethritis, abscesses of the prostate gland and to treat leucorrhoea. Also to remedy hemorrhoids.

- Stomachic and carminative properties of pepper cubeda are used to treat indigestion and flatulence.

- Being antiseptic, expectorant and disinfectant, it can be used in throat infections, colds, sinusitis, chronic cough, chronic bronchitis. Ayurvedic medicine uses it to treat halitosis.

- Cubeic acid and resins can increase the urine output. Treatments with this plant give the urine a peculiar smell.

- Cubeda essential oil is irritant. It can cause headache, nausea, or it can have a laxative effect.

Composition of fruit of pepper cubeda
(Piper cubeba)
Chemical compound Contents
(in ppm.)
Resinoids 64.000 - 85.000
Resin 30.000 - 37.000
Cubebin 25.000
Cubebol 10.000 - 20.000
Cadinene 8.800 - 17.600
Cubenene 7.100 - 14.200
Aromadendrene 4.200 - 8.400
Calamenene 3.700 - 7.400
Caryophyllene 3.700 - 7.400
Cubenol 1.750 - 3.500
Bisabolene 1.500 - 3.000
Muurolene 1.200 - 2.400
Cadinol 1.000 - 2.000
Cineole 700 - 1.400

Other uses of Cubeba pepper

- In medieval European cuisine, the spice cubeba was greatly appreciated. It was used in the preparation of the sauce sarcenes, and its use declined probably due to its bitter taste, which could have been mistaken for a shoddy pepper.

- Cubeba is still widely used as a a spice, to season meats and prepare sauces. The Arabs exported it to Africa some traditional dishes as markouts, and spice blends as Raz el hanout are cooked with it. In Indonesia it is a common spice.

- Cubeba is used to prepare gin.

- Cubeba is also used in cigarettes, mixed with tobacco.

punto rojo More information about black pepper and other types of peppers in the listing above

Botanical classification
Kingdom Plantae
Subkingdom Tracheobionta
Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta
Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta
Flower plants
Class Magnoliopsida
Dicotyledons
Order Piperales
Family Piperaceae
Gender Piper
Species P. cubeba L.

punto rojo More information about black pepper and other types of peppers in the listing above

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This material is for informational purposes only. In case of doubt, consult the doctor.
"Botanical" is not responsible for damages caused by self-medication.

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