Green cardamom pods are preferred by both chefs and serious home cooks. Top quality cardamom is harvested while still immature and sun-dried to preserve its bright green color. Green cardamom pods are often difficult to find and therefore a bit expensive. Whole pods have a superior ability to retain the much sought after flavor and aroma.
Cardamom can also be used for savory flavoring in pâtés, purées, rice, sauces, soups, stews and with chicken, meats, seafood and vegetables. If you want to enhance sweet dishes try adding cardamom seeds to your homemade custard, ice cream, rice pudding or sprinkle them over a fresh fruit salad.
Whole Cardamom pods, when slightly crushed, are used to flavor casseroles, curries, rice and stew. Add both the crushed pod and the seeds to the cooking pot as the pod will dissolve while providing a bit of extra flavor to the dish.
If you just want the seeds place the cardamom pod(s) in your mortar and lightly pound the pods with the pestle. The pods will split open and the seeds will spill out.