The Clove Trade and The Rich History of Italian Cuisine

If you’ve ever eaten Italian food and wondered where this bizarre food has come from why it is so loved by the world, then you have probably not yet acquainted with the Clove. Cloves are the most common part of this small flower-like aromatic plant and are the most powerful known spice in the world.

This is probably because they taste so darn good. Cloves are a delicate spice that most cultures have never found a use for. Most people are familiar with whole spices, namely black pepper, cumin, and cloves. They are also extremely fragrant and hard to overdo.

Cloves are native to the Asian continent and have been since humans have been smoking everything from Onga – the savoury stew of curry – to almonds, vanilla, and the rose family. The earliest recorded instance of cloves as a spice in history happened about 1600 BC.

The earliest mention of cloves as a food product occurs in the Chinese book The Apologies in gratitude to His Father. It is also written that cloves were introduced into Italy, Europe, and the Middle East about the year 600 AD. Over time, cloves were spread to the entire world.

This is not to say that the spice was not successful. In fact, at least in the initial years, cloves were only used by a few monasteries in the East and were rarely, if ever, incorporated into Western cooking. However, with the introduction of Chinese chilli and the discovery of the New World, cloves made their way to the kitchen. And to the delight of every cook and spice-lover, cloves have become a ubiquitous spice.

The Benefits of Cloves

Cloves are more than 3-quarters of an inch in length and are extremely fragrant. The berry has a very crumbly, earthy texture and can be used in both sweet and savoury dishes. Cloves are also terrific for the heart and have been known to improve blood circulation.

Generally, the Noni health drink features a blend of natural sweeteners and natural botanicals. They are known for their aphrodisiac qualities and have been used to restore sexual health for centuries.

The unique flavour of cloves can be traced to the fact that they are a relative of the onion, shallot, and chive. Also, like the other members of the onion family, they have a strong flavour that is due to the presence of natural sulphur-containing compounds called alliin and diallyl sulfide. These compounds give cloves their distinctive flavour and, as such, they are good chopped and crushed but also used in their fresh form.

Cloves are relatively high in fat and can be harvested fresh or canned. The high amount of cholesterol and sodium found in the cloves are a problem and must be taken into consideration when using spices in foods. The proper breaking and grinding of the clove is important to get the most out of the strong flavour.

Nutmeg- Although nutmeg was first discovered and used in the Middle East, its origin was thought to be in India. However, the Incas and Aztecs used nutmeg in their traditional medicine remedies.

They also believed that the fruit had powers to prevent illness and ward off marauding tigers. The Spaniards saw these signs and learned of the properties of the fruit. Later, the Spaniards extended their research to other parts of the world where the plant was grown.

The active compound in nutmeg is an alkaloid – yacon. This is a much more complex compound than the nutmeg itself and is highly valued because of its wonderful effects on the human body.

Nutmeg has been used for centuries in traditional and modern medicine. This and other substances found in nutmeg have been used to prevent infections, prevent fever, promote drinking, and manage pain.

As you can see, there is a lot more to nutmeg than meets the eye. Nevertheless, Traditional Food in Indonesia is very popular. And this is for good reason.

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