Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Awash in Pumpkin Pie Spice

What is it about this time of year? Pumpkin Pie spice flavor is everywhere. Retailers and shops promote the "return of pumpkin pie spice!" Really? It sounds like some kind of horror movie!

Why are people so infatuated with the flavor, which by the way I do not fully appreciate?

What is pumpkin pie spice? It is a combination of common spices: cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, and ginger! Some of the most common cooking spices to be found in the most basic kitchen. 

Here is the really funny part: there is no pumpkin in pumpkin pie spice! It is the collection of spices which go into pumpkin pie to give it that down home, Thanksgiving-memory-smell that just screams: "eat me!" And don't forget the ice cream and whipped cream!

Well, for some people. 

I think America has gone overboard with the seasonal spice. I think there are even beers which advertise a pumpkin pie spice variety. 

I searched on pumpkin pie spice and  found some amazing products that are laced with the seasonal concoction. Among them marshmallows, cough medicine, and cookies. There are also liqueurs, ice creams, and yogurts! I saw an advertisement for pumpkin pie wine--seriously, made in Texas, of all places (get a grip!).

I believe that the love for this spice is out of control. The marketing machines have created a monster!

Yes, it is likely a comfort concoction to help sooth the transition from the warmth and excitement of summer to the day and dreary days of winter, but I thought that's what falling leaves were created to help us with.

All things in moderation, I seem to remember the old colloquialism. Back off on the pumpkin pie spice and enjoy the season.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

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