Essential Spice Ground Green Cardamom has a distinctly more smoky, though not bitter, aroma, with a coolness some consider similar to mint. It is a spice made from the seeds of several plants in the genera Elettaria and Amomum in the family Zingiberaceae. Both genera are native to the Indian subcontinent and Indonesia. They are recognized by their small seed pods: triangular in cross-section and spindle-shaped, with a thin, papery outer shell and small, black seeds; Elettaria pods are light green and smaller, while Amomum pods are larger and dark brown. Green cardamom is one of the most expensive spices by weight but little is needed to impart flavor.