Monday, March 28, 2011

History of Allspice (Pimento dioica)

Allspice acquired it s name in the early seventeenth century when someone noticed that its flavour and scent resemble of mixture of cloves, nutmeg and cinnamon – obviously these three do not encompass all 250 spices in existence, but close enough.

It was used as a seasoning and to embalm the dead in before fifteenth century by Mayas of Latin America.

Allspice is derived from a tall tree native to Latin America and the Caribbean. It was discovered by Columbus in his first voyage, in 1492, undertaken to bring back spices for Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain.

The Aztecs employed allspice to sweeten and flavour their favored chocolate drink.

The spice was exported to Europe from 1601 onward as a substitute for cardamom.

At the end of nineteenth century, it became fashionable to have umbrellas and walking sticks made of pimento.

It has always been an important spice and condiment and was added to mulled wine and curry, among other dishes.

It has also been used to improve the favor of commercial medicines.
History of Allspice (Pimento dioica)
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