Mehlepi – also known as mahlab or mahlepi is a Mediterranean spice which comes from Greek cherry trees. The mehlepi spice is extracted by cracking open the cherry stones of the St Lucie cherry tree, and removing the tiny seed kernel from inside. The mehlepi kernels are then ground to a powder in a spice mill, releasing their distinctive, marzipan-sour cherry aromas.
Traditionally, mehlepi is used to flavour Greek-American Christmas cakes, with the flavours complimenting Christmas clove and nutmeg aromas. Mehlepi is also delicious in biscuits and pastries, or even used to introduce an exotic spiciness to jams and pickles.
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