Allspice is the dried, unripe fruit of an evergreen tree native to Jamaica, Cuba and Guatemala. The round fruit is harvested at three to four months after flowering, when it is fully developed but still green.
With an aroma reminiscent of cloves, sweet and floral, allspice is warm and pungent to taste. Its flavour has a hint of cinnamon, mace and nutmeg, with peppery overtones. Used in mixed spice, curry powders and pickling spices, allspice complements root vegetables, meats, gravies, pickles, relishes and seafood.
Allspice is particularly popular in the cuisine of the Caribbean and is indispensable to jerk dishes. The spice is also found in many sweet recipes for cakes and stewed fruit. Some cooks prefer allspice to cloves, as there is less risk of being heavy-handed.
Gregg's Allspice is available whole and ground.