Scientific name: piper nigrum
Peppercorns are the fruit and seeds of a vine native to India. The fruit is very small and only has one seed, and a thin layer of flesh around the outside. Peppercorns are dried and sold as pepper, either whole or ground up into small flakes or a powder. Pepper is usually sold in white and black. White pepper is made from just the seeds of the pepper fruit, and black pepper is made from the whole fruit, seed and all.