Clove, small, reddish-brown flower bud of the tropical evergreen tree


Clove, small, reddish-brown flower bud of the tropical evergreen tree Syzygium aromaticum of the family Myrtaceae, was important in the earliest spice trade and believed in indigenous to the Moluccas or Spice Islands (now Maluka), of Indonesia. Now it is growing in various parts of the world mainly Indonesia,India, Madagascar and Tanzania .The people of the Moluccas used to plant a clove tree to celebrate the birth of a child and would wear a necklace of cloves as a protection from evil spirit and illness. Strong in aroma and hot and pungent in taste, cloves are used to flavour many foods, particularly meats and bakery products; in Europe and the USA the spice is a characteristic flavouring in Christmas holiday fare, such as wassail and mincemeat. The name clove is believed to be derived from the French word clou meaning nail due to the appearance of this spice. As early as 200 BC, envoys from Java to the Han-dynasty court of China brought cloves that were customarily held in the mouth to perfume the breath during audiences with the emperor

Cloves are ingredients in many classic spice mixtures. Whole cloves are frequently used to flavour cooking liquids for simmering fish, poultry, game and meat. They feature in classic sauces and are used in the bakery industry and the processed meats industry as a ground spice.

Medicinal Uses

Cloves are used in Ayurveda, Chinese medicine and western herbalism and dentistry where the essential oil is used as an anodyne for dental emergencies. Cloves are used as a carminitive, to increase hydrochloric acid in the stomach and to improve peristalsis. Cloves are also said to be a natural anthelmintic.[1] The essential oil is used in aromatherapy when stimulation and warming is needed, especially for digestive problems. Topical application over the stomach or abdomen will warm the digestive tract The clove oil is used to prepare microscopic slides for viewing and is also a local anesthetic for toothaches. It is a strong antiseptic and preservative. It is used to treat flatulence, colic, indigestion and nausea. Eugenol is used in germicides, perfumes and mouthwashes, in the synthesis of vanillin, and as a sweetener or intensifier

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For generations we have been engaged in natural farming of spices in home village situated near the misty mountains of Munnar, in the interior of Western Ghats in India. In 1990, we added vanilla into our farm as a pioneer.