Don’t Forget There’s No Pumpkin (The History of Pumpkin Spice)

Stephanie West, Staff Writer

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The growing fascination with pumpkin spice, otherwise known as Pumpkin Pie Spice, is becoming more popular with each autumn season. From pumpkin spice lattes to Pumpkin Spice Hummus, the number of things that have been altered to be pumpkin spice flavored just keeps growing. The strange thing is, while many people know of the spice,they don’t seem to know what’s in it. ‘Pumpkin Spice’ has no actual pumpkin in it. It’s a collection of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, and ginger. Recently pumpkin has been added into the mix, just to satisfy those that were confused as to why pumpkin was not in pumpkin pie spice, but originally it was not that way, so where did it start?

In the time of the Balkans, when the trade routes were sparse, and there wasn’t enough food to go around, there were pumpkins. However, the pumpkins of the time were bitter, extremely sour, and had an unpalatable flavor. The only way to make the taste bearable was to put cinnamon on it. Eventually, this idea became widespread and resulted in a huge demand for the rich flavors of the cinnamon pumpkin mixture. However this was just the start of the obsession.

Later, when the colonists met and traded foods, traditions, and other ideas, with the native people in the new world, what would later be known as the United States of America, they single-handedly enslaved a society to the concept of a spice mix to a season. This was what sealed the deal for the later craze that would start over sixty-five plus different kinds of edible items that would be flavored, or scented, to the spice that started an obsession, pumpkin spice. Whether you love it or hate it, the Pumpkin spice preoccupation is something that you are well aware of.

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