Clove - Drink Secrets


Cloves - Syzygium aromaticum


Cloves are the collective name of aromatic and dried flower buds from any tree in the family of Myrtaceae, in India they are known as Lavang and in Vietnam their name is Dinh huong. In English and French the name clove is derived from clavus, the Latin word for nail, as the resemblance between small and irregular nails and cloves is striking. Cloves are harvested all over the world but mainly in Indonesia, Madagascar, Zanzibar, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and India.


The clove tree is evergreen, grows up to 8 to 12 meters and have large, square leaves with blood colored flowers growing in clusters all over the tree. The flower buds are first pale and then turn into green and then finally when they start turning red, they are harvested and turned into cloves. Since cloves are extremely strong they are used in very small amounts if they are used in cooking, but cloves are not used only in cooking, they are used in a special kind of cigarrette popular in Europe and Asia known as kretek in Indonesia. They are also important in the production of the Indian chai tea, a tea described to have a sweet cinnamon taste, in the Netherlands, cloves are also used in tea, and in Mexico, where they are known as clavos de olor they are important in cuisine and often mixed with cumin and cinnamon.


In some European countries during Christmas times, it is popular to stick bits of cloves into oranges and hang around the house, this spreads a pleasant scent through the house and the oranges are used as Christmas decorations. Cloves also have medicinal uses in Indian and Chinese medicine, and are also used as painkillers in western herbalism and dentistry, and are also used to kill parasitic worms that might live inside the body of a person.

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