Hands up who thought this was a spice blend? Spoiler alert: it’s not. We bring you the facts and best recipes to help you really get to know allspice.
Know it all(spice)
Allspice (aka Jamaican pepper/ pimento) is the dried unripe berry of the Pimenta dioica tree found in Central America. Named allspice by the Brits in the 17th century as it tastes like a blend of cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg, its flavour can be mimicked with this spice combo.
Used in both sweet and savoury dishes, allspice is a big deal in Caribbean food as well as popping up in Middle Eastern and Latin American recipes and more. It’s thought to have healing properties too and is drunk as a tea to relieve colds and upset stomachs.
Source and store
Most supermarkets sell ground allspice but the whole berries are harder to find. Try health food shop or buy online. Both should be stored in an airtight container in a cool, dark place.
If you do find whole berries, these can either be ground into a powder or used whole (roughly 6 berries for ¼ to ½ tsp of powder), just remember to take them out before serving up.
Small bites with allspice
Whether you’re nursing a cold or just fancy a flavour-packed soup, try this spiced chicken noodle option. It’s a bowl full of chilli, allspice and all things nice to make you glow from the inside.
Our hero spice blends beautifully with a yummy bunch of spices to season these irresistible Cajun-spiced potato wedges. A perfect snack or side to whip up in the air fryer (check out our top air fryer chip tips too).
This easy courgette bread takes minutes to prepare and needs no rising time. Spiced with allspice, cinnamon and nutmeg as well as nuts and raisins, it’s great with soup or as a tasty midmorning snack.
Allspice together now
Allspice is a mainstay of Jamaican jerk cooking. Proper jerk seasoning mixes chilli with savoury spices like allspice and cloves to create those amazing flavours, so these jerk-spiced ribs are spot on. Grill to perfection and get stuck in.
Jazz up basmati with saffron, lentils, dates and allspice (of course) to make a deliciously satisfying mid-week meal in minutes.
Rival the infamous flatpack furniture giant’s legendary instore offering with your own homemade and sublime Swedish meatballs with dill mash. Serve with cranberry sauce (not just for Christmas!) and steamed greens.
Keep it sweet
Take classic sticky toffee pudding to the next level with this spiced and Cornish fudge loaded variety. Make and freeze the sponge ahead of time and you’ll have a gorgeous stand by pud for whenever the urge takes you.
The name’s a bit deceiving but this cinnamon spice mix is actually a blend of our favourite wintery spices (including a generous pinch of allspice) that can be used instead of pure cinnamon in any baking recipe that calls for it. Cinnamon rolls, muffins, cookies… drool.
We’ve saved the best till last with this gingerbread cake. Perfectly spiced with allspice and a few other big hitters, bake round and top with frosting or make a sheet cake and sprinkle with icing sugar. The twist? It’s dairy-free but you’d never know it. It’s all about the spice…