While its ground form may recall warm flavors of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves, allspice (Pimenta dioica) berries, used fresh, add an intriguing spice with an ever-so-gently hint of heat. Typically, the berries are picked when green, dried and used in many cuisines, including Caribbean jerk, pickling seasonings, sausages, Mexican moles and Palestinian dishes. Fresh leaves are often used like bay leaves.
“I’ve never worked with them before, but I had tasted them at Margie’s,” she says. “I thought of using them like blueberries, but since they pack such a big flavor, I figured we’d tone them down a bit.” She took the entire pint, whirred them in the food processor, added some sugar and a pinch of salt and pepper to make a paste. “If it’s too thick, add a teaspoon or two of water,” she says. “I then… Read More