Cloves Sweet Astringent Camphorous

The taste of cloves can easily be overpowering due to its high eugenol content. The pungent bittersweet, astringent flavor is best blended with similar warming spices to soften the overpowering flavor. The woody flavor from caryophyllene is another compound that can be used to make flavor pairings.

Flavor chart anise

ClovesCloves are the dried flower buds from the clove tree, a tree that grows in tropical climates. The flower buds are handpicked when they are pink and are about to open. When they dry they get their brown color. The clove is hard from the outside but inside the clove contains an oily substance. 

Cloves contain about 15 percent eugenol, the oily substance that is responsible for the typical smell of cloves. Many studies have been done on eugenol because of its medicinal properties. Eugenol works as a tranquilizer for the nervous system and that’s why cloves were once commonly used for toothache. A clove on the sore tooth reduces the pain. Clove is also often an ingredient of herbal toothpastes and the oil made from cloves has many applications in dentistry. For example, the clove oil is an ingredient of temporary fillings, and it’s utilized with root canal treatments. But nowadays the oil is mostly synthetically made from benzoic acid.

Clove flowersCloves as a spice often works well when you suffer from digestive problems. Cloves reduce flatulence and promote the overall working of the digestive system. It’s also a good way to treat nausea and diarrhea just as cinnamon does.

Cloves are also add a nice taste to herbal teas. Don’t use to much of them because they have a very strong taste, 5 or 6 cloves on half a litre of herbal tea is enough. I usually combine it with cinnamon, ginger, turmeric and pepper for a deliciously healthy herbal tea. In Ayurvedic medicine, cloves are often prescribed in this way to treat all kinds of ailments.

Buy preferably whole cloves instead of grounded cloves, because ground cloves lose their flavor more quickly. It is better to leave it in its natural packaging. In a sealed jar, they have a shelf life of up to one year. When cloves are of good quality, they float vertically in water, when they are old they will sink to the bottom or they float horizontally. As with all herbs and spices it’s best to them organically to assure yourself of the best quality with the best features.

Some health advantages summed up:

  • Cloves are a very good source of manganese, and they also contain iron, calcium and magnesium.
  • Cloves are a good source of vitamin K.
  • Cloves in a herbal tea help relieve coughing.
  • Cloves have anti-viral properties
  • Cloves are effective in treating fungal infections.
  • Cloves are a natural antiseptic (antibacterial).
  • Cloves put on a sore tooth relieve the toothache
  • Cloves promote blood circulation.
  • Cloves added to a meal stimulate the body to produce antioxidant enzymes that protect the body against oxidative damage.

Cloves drying in the sun on Bali

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