The scientific name of the Allspice tree is Pimenta dioica. It is also known as Clove pepper, Jamaica pepper and Pimento.
Allspice is the dried berry of the pimento, an evergreen tropical tree growing to 40 feet in height. The fruit is a fleshy, sweet berry which is purplish-black when ripe. The berries used for allspice are collected when they have reached full size but are not yet ripe. This tree grows in the West Indies, South America, Central America, and Mexico. The known medicinal properties of this tree are aromatic, carminative, and stimulant.
The taste of the berry is a combination of black pepper, nutmeg, cloves, and cinnamon.
Also read: Top proven reasons to eat kiwi fruit daily
Allspice nutrition value and calories
A tsp (2 gm) of grounded allspice mixture has about 5 calories.
It is low in Sodium, and very low in Cholesterol. It is also a good source of Iron, Magnesium, Potassium and Copper, and a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Vitamin C, Calcium and Manganese.
Traditional health benefits and uses of Allspice
Pimento water and oil of pimento are helpful for flatulent indigestion or simple flatulence; the oil is used for hysteria. As an ointment or a bath additive, allspice is said to have some anesthetic effects. Also used for rheumatism and neuralgia.
Scientifically proven health benefits of Allspice
An animal study has shown that allspice can help lower blood pressure and useful in hypertension problem.
According to a study, an aqueous extract of berries of Pimenta dioica (Allspice) demonstrate antitumor and chemo-preventive against human breast cancer cells in vitro and in vivo.
A study has shown that the essential oil of allspice has antimicrobial activities which provide effective protection against various infections.
Another study has found that extracts of allspice tree has ability to neutralize hemorrhagic activity induced by the venom of the snake. It makes it useful against venom toxicity or snake bite.
A study concluded that All spice (P. dioca) has estrogenic effects and has been used by Costa Rican women to treat menopausal symptoms.
Another study proves that the leaves of allspice tree has anticancer and antioxidant properties.
Allspice recipe ideas, formulas or dosages
Pimento water: combine 5 parts crushed berries with 200 parts water and distill down to half the original volume. A dose is from 1-2 fluid ounces.
Oil: a dose is from 2-5 drops. For flatulence, take 2 or 3 drops on sugar.
Powder: a dose is from 10-30 grains.
Plaster: boil crushed berries in water until the mixture is thick enough to spread on a linen cloth. Allspice has also been used as a deodorant.
As the leaves of allspice tree are rich in antioxidants and helps to prevent cancer, include its fresh leaves in the cooking. They are similar in texture to bay leaves and are thus infused during cooking and then removed before serving.
Add allspice into your pickle recipe, sauces, curry powder, dessert, cakes, stews, soups and barbecue sauce.
Use it along with other seasoning mixture.