Cloves Know Your Herbs and Spices
Remember oranges and apples covered in cloves? We would take an orange or apple and pierce it with a bazillion tiny clove spikes. You gave your new air freshener to Mom as a Mother’s day, Birthday or Christmas gift. That clove ball made the entire house smell so good!
Maybe you are more of a ham sticker. You know the look. The whole ham with deep cross-cuts gets decorated with pineapple, cherries and of course, cloves.
Are you more familiar with the ground version? Ground cloves qualify as another warm spice you can add to your list beside cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. These flavors play well together.
Cloves are dried flower buds originating on an evergreen tree. The buds are picked just before the flowers open.
You can use cloves with meat whole or ground. Try to remove whole cloves from hams before serving.
Many fruits like apples, pears and cranberries work with cloves. Cloves are found in many baked goods and are a favorite in spice laden cookies like molasses. Keep in mind that a little bit of cloves goes a long way.
When I was little, my Mom used to keep a bottle of oil of clove around for toothache relief. You’d dab a little on your gum and it would numb it for a little while.
Today clove oil is used in perfume, air fresheners and even in insect repellant.
Cloves are a wonderful spice with so many uses. It’s one of my favorites.