Cabe Puyang or Long Pepper: Uses and Recipes


Since Indonesian Jamu drinks are highly influenced by Indian Ayurveda practices, it is not surprising if Jamu ingredients are also the ones used in Ayurveda. One of them is Cabe Puyang (Piper retrofactum) or Chavya. Names in different languages include Java Long Pepper (English), Balinese Pepper (English), Chavakam (Telugu), or Bengali (Chayi).

Cabe Puyang

The plant is a climbing vine with stems of about 3-4 mm in diameter. Its leaves are about 10-12 cm long and 3-3.5 cm wide. The vine is dioecious, with male spikes about 5 cm long and female spikes about 4 cm long. Its berries are spherical and arranged densely on the axis.

Cabe Puyang tastes like pepper and gives warm effect to the body. Long before the chili and pepper comes to Indonesia, this plant was used as herbs in Indonesian dishes to add the heat. According to the research and findings, Cabe Puyang contains piperine, chavicine, palmitic acids, tetrapydropiperic acid, sesamin, and essential oil.

In Indonesia, Jamu Cabe Puyang is among the popular Jamu drinks that has many health benefits. People drink Jamu Cabe Puyang to alleviate sore muscles and to reduce fever. For those who suffer from anemia, Jamu Cabe Puyang has ability to increase the red blood cells production.

Other than the ones mentioned above, Cabe Puyang also has other benefits such as:

  • As analgesic to reduce and treat the pain caused by sprained muscle, fever, or toothache.
  • As anti-inflammatory
  • To reduce the symptoms of beriberi
  • To treat cold and other symptoms like fever, runny nose, and coughing
  • To help with digestion problems like gastritis and bloating
  • To ease puffed breath or asphyxiate
  • To increase energy and stamina, especially for adult males
  • To ease the symptoms of rheumatic
  • To accelerate blood circulation and prevent hypertension
  • To prevent nausea
Jamu Cabe Puyang

Aside from making Jamu Cabe Puyang, you can use these recipes to make Cabe Puyang potion:

For fever

Prepare 3 gram dried Cabe Puyang, and mash into powder. You can mix the Cabe Puyang powder with warm water, and drink three times a day until the fever symptoms subside.

For toothache

Use 3 pieces of Cabe Puyang leaves and mash to get rough texture. Brew with hot water and use the mixture as mouthwash.

For “masuk angin” or cold

Prepare 3 grams Cabe Puyang, 1 cm ginger, 1 cm temulawak (curcuma), and 3 gram palm sugar. Mash the ingredients and boil with 3 glasses of water. Strain with cloth and drink while warm.

For universal use

  • Prepare 3 grams of powdered Cabe Puyang and brew with 150 ml of hot water. Drink while warm.
  • Boil 3 grams of Cabe Puyang’s root and boil with around 2 glasses of water. Drink while warm, or use as mouthwash to treat toothache.

Pregnant women and people who suffer heatiness should not consume any potion or drink made of Cabe Puyang.