Pumpkin Spice is the flavour of the season (until its sister Gingerbread heralds the beginning of Christmas!) and this delightful spice blend has a rich, exotic history that is largely unknown by most of us rushing into a coffee shop to buy our first PSL (Pumpkin Spice Latte) of the season!
Ancient Persian spice traders bringing a particularly sour spice blend from northern Mongolia on the Spice Routes decided to blend it with the warm, sweet tones of cinnamon making it delicious – and the first settlers in America apparently filled pumpkins with milk, honey and spices in the first incarnation of the now famous pumpkin pie.
The blend is a combination of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, allspice and cloves, and it’s very easy to make! This is Betty Crocker’s recipe for DIY Pumpkin Spice:
3 tablespoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground nutmet
1.5 teaspoon ground allspice
1.5 teaspoon ground cloves
Mix together and store in a small jar.
Most of the recipes that I’ve checked are the same, with a couple adding in half a teaspoon of Mace (the outer covering of the nutmeg), but the general recipe to stir the spices together and pop in a jar is very simple to do! It has the added benefit too, of staying nice and fresh so that you can make a new batch every couple of weeks during the season!