Black cumin is a herbaceous perennial plant native to Central Asia and Northern India. It grows up to 60 centimetres tall and 25 centimetres wide, and has frilly leaves with hermaphroditic white or pink flowers. It is used as a herb and a spice, and its small, rounded taproot is also edible and commonly consumed as a vegetable in Kashmir. The dried fruit of the plant is used as a spice, dark brown in color with a slender, ridged crescent shape, a unique characteristic of the fruit. It has an exotic floral, earthy aroma when raw, but upon cooking develops a distinctly nutty flavour. It is less bitter and more peppery than regular cumin. The essential oil is used in perfume industry and in confectionery.