A Woman's Journey Round The World, From Vienna To Brazil, Chili, Tahiti, China, Hindostan, Persia, And Asia Minor By Ida Pfeiffer

 -  {120b}

I frequently used to visit the plantations of nutmegs and cloves,
and refresh myself with their balsamic fragrance.  The - Page 250
A Woman's Journey Round The World, From Vienna To Brazil, Chili, Tahiti, China, Hindostan, Persia, And Asia Minor By Ida Pfeiffer - Page 250 of 708 - First - Home

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{120b} I Frequently Used To Visit The Plantations Of Nutmegs And Cloves, And Refresh Myself With Their Balsamic Fragrance.

The nutmeg-tree is about the size of a fine apricot-bush, and is covered from top to bottom with thick foliage; the branches grow very low down the stem, and the leaves shine as if they were varnished.

The fruit is exactly similar to an apricot covered with yellowish-brown spots. When ripe it bursts, exposing to view a round kernel about the size of a nut, enclosed in a kind of net-work of a fine deep red: this network is known as mace. It is carefully separated from the nutmeg itself, and dried in the shade. While undergoing this process, it is frequently sprinkled with sea-water, to prevent its original tint turning black instead of yellow. In addition to this net-work, the nutmeg is covered with a thin, soft rind. The nutmeg itself is also dried, then smoke-dried a little, and afterwards, to prevent its turning mouldy, dipped several times in sea-water, containing a weak solution of lime.

The clove-tree is somewhat smaller, and cannot boast of such luxuriant foliage, or such fine large leaves as the nutmeg-tree. The cloves are the buds of the tree gathered before they have had time to blossom. They are first smoked, and then laid for a short time in the sun.

Another kind of spice is the areca-nut, which hangs under the crown of the palm of the same name, in groups containing from ten to twenty nuts each.

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