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    Cardamom powder

    It is made by grinding the small green cardamoms, skin and all. You need to sieve it through a fine sieve, to remove all fiber and to get the fine powder you were given. It is the ground skin that gives them the slightly green/beige colour that you describe. The skin of green cardamom (and brown cardamom) is edible. They are chewed whole, the small green ones, as an after meal mouth fresheners all over India.