Synonyms: Pimento, Jamaica Pepper. Also known as Pimenta and akubaba in parts of Eastern Europe.
Pimento, or Jamaica Pepper - allspice as most of us know it - is the dried full-grown, but immature fruit of Pimento officinalis, or Eugenia Pimenta, an evergreen tree. The Jamaican pepper is commonly grown on a tropical island where it is an extremely popular seasoning.
Allspice has a pleasant aroma, somewhat similar to that of oil of cloves, and a pungent, spicy taste. The clove-like odor of the oil is likely due to the ingredient eugenol.
More than half the supply of the spice found in commerce comes from Jamaica.
Allspice as an Herb for Medicinal Uses
Pimento (allspice) is an aromatic stimulant to the gastro-intestinal tract, resembling cloves in its action. It is employed chiefly as an addition to tonics and purgatives and as flavoring.
Allspice 100% Pure Therapeutic Grade Essential Oil, as well as the spirit and the distilled water of pimento are useful for flatulent indigestion.
The remedy: Two or three drops of the oil on sugar are given to correct flatulence.
Medically, allspice is used as a paste to soothe and relieve toothache, and as a mouthwash to freshen the breath.
Allspice is often used in potpourri as aromatherapy.
Culinary Uses of Allspice
Allspice is perfect for pickling, mulling and marinades.
Allspice tastes like a combination of cloves, juniper berries, cinnamon and pepper, and is used frequently in baked goods. The spice derives its name from the Portuguese pimenta, Spanish pimienta pepper, which it was given due to its resemblance to peppercorns.
To make your own blend of allspice take equal amounts of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. Mix together. Store any unused portion in an air-tight container.
The chief use of allspice is as a spice and condiment. The berries are added to curry powder and also to mulled wine.
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