Cardamom Seed
» Cardamom Seed is the dried ripe seed of Elettaria cardamomum (L.) Maton (Fam. Zingiberaceae).
note—Cardamom Seed should be recently removed from the capsule.
Packaging and storage— Preserve against attack by insects (see Vegetable and Animal Substances in the General Notices and Requirements).
Labeling— The label states the Latin binomial and the official name.
Botanic characteristics—
Unground Cardamom Seed— Seeds usually appear in agglutinated groups of two to seven seeds, and as separate seeds surrounded by an adhering membranous aril. The individual seeds are oblong-ovoid or irregularly three- to four-sided, from 3 to 4 mm in length. They are convex on the dorsal side, strongly longitudinally grooved on the ventral side, coarsely tuberculated, and externally pale orange to dark brown. The odor is aromatic. The taste is aromatic, pungent, and slightly bitter.
Histology— Sections show a loosely attached membranous aril; a brownish seed coat consisting of an epidermal layer of thick-walled cells, a pigment layer of small cells with red to orange contents, a layer of volatile oil cells with suberized walls and a single layer of radially elongated, strongly lignified stone cells with inner walls heavily thickened, and a minute lumen containing silica; and a large, colorless perisperm surrounding a central, orange to yellow endosperm in which a small, straight embryo is embedded.
Powdered Cardamom Seed— Brown to weak yellow to light olive green. It consists chiefly of fragments of perisperm, endosperm, embryo, and seed coat. The endosperm and perisperm cells are filled with starch grains from 1 to 4 µm in diameter, or may contain one or more prisms of calcium oxalate from 10 to 25 µm in diameter. The seed coat is characterized by its red- to orange-colored cells, is polygonal in surface view, and is about 20 µm in diameter. Fragments of pericarp tissue with spiral vessels and with accompanying slightly lignified fibers are relatively few.
Acid-insoluble ash 561: not more than 4.0% is found.
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Monograph Rick G. Schnatz
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