What is Capers?
While some of us have come across bottled capers at the grocery stores, capers are still relatively unknown to many people. So, what exactly are capers? Capers are the edible pickled flower buds of the Capparis spinosa or caper bush.
The caper bush grows in the Mediterranean countries of Cyprus, Greece, Spain, Italy, Tunisia, Egypt etc. In fact, the caper bush is also found in certain arid parts of Australia and the sand dunes of Pakistan.
Basically, the caper bush thrives in hot sunny weather with mild springs. The caper bush doesn’t adapt well to cold temperatures.
During hearvest season the caper buds turn a dark olive green color. This indicates that the caper buds are now ready to be picked. In case, they are unpicked and left to mature, the bud transforms into the caperberry fruit, also called caper berries.
Once the caper bud is picked, it is immediately dried in the sun and then pickled with salt, vinegar, or a mixture of both salt and vinegar. Some caper producers prefer to drain the capers rather than pickling them.
Capers have an exclusive lemon-like and tangy flavor which makes them so special. These capers are widely used by the Sicilians, people in the Tuscany region and most Mediterranean countries for seasoning, in sauces, with salads and much more.