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All-Spice (Pimento) is another common occupant of the domestic spice box. It is popular as a warming cordial, of a sweet odour, and a grateful aromatic taste; but being a native of South America, grows with us only as a stove plant.
The leaves and bark are full of inflammable particles, whilst walks between Pimento trees are odorous with a delicious scent. The name All-Spice is given because the berries afford in smell and taste a combination of Cloves, Juniper berries, Cinnamon and Pepper.
The special qualities of the Pimento reside in the rind of these berries; and this tree is the Bromelia ananas, named in Brazil Nana. An extract made from the crushed berries by boiling them down to a thick liquor, is, when spread on linen, a capital stimulating plaster for neuralgic or rheumatic parts. About the physician in "les Francais" it was said admiringly "c'est lui qui a inventé la salade d'Ananas."
The essential oil of All-Spice, as well as the spirit and the distilled water of Pimento, are useful against flatulent indigestion and for hysterical paroxysms. This Spice was formerly added to our syrup of buckthorn to prevent it from griping.
The berries are put into curry powder, and added to mulled wines.