What Is Allspice? Where Does Allspice Come From?
Allspice, also called Jamaica pepper or pimento, is loved and widely used in Caribbean and Jamaican dishes. Allspice is the dried, unripe berry of the Pimenta Dioica tree, which can reach up to 40 feet in height and is a member of the Myrtle tree family. This tree is native to tropical areas like southern Mexico and Central America, but is now also grown and cultivated in many areas of the world with tropical climates. Allspice was initially mistaken for a pepper in its early days of discovery, which explains the botanical name of pimenta.
What is Allspice Used For?
Allspice comes in full berry form, or can be purchased ground. Both allspice forms have unique uses and recipes where they shine. Whole Jamaican Allspice Berries can be used to infuse stocks and sauces, as long as they are removed or strained before serving. Whole allspice berries are also great for pickling vegetables or fruits, and can be found in our Pickling Spices Blend, and is also common in mulled wines and spiced apple ciders. See all of the spices we love in our Mulling Spices Blend.
Ground allspice is the better option when baking cookies and cakes. Recipes like these pfeffernusse spiced cookies, and this spice cake, rely on the complex flavors of Allspice to create a warm and perfectly spicy dessert. The ground version of this berry can also be used in sauces like barbecue sauce or gravy. Allspice is a common, prominent flavor in many Caribbean jerk dishes and our Jamaican Jerk Seasoning.