How to Make It
This mix of spices varies from home to home (and manufacturer to manufacturer). It is really quite simple to prepare yourself, and doing so will give you control of the flavors you want to emphasize. To make your own pumpkin pie spice, mix a combination of the following ground spices to taste:
• optional: cardamom
How to Use It
You can use this mix to flavor the fillings for pies like pumpkin and sweet potato. You can also use it to add sweetness and depth to casseroles, cookies and pastries. The spice mix can vary greatly, so be sure to add a little, taste, then adjust as needed. Think of this as a finishing mix: You can use it to garnish dishes like mashed potatoes or turnips.
How to Store It
Since this strong mix tends to be a large part of holiday flavors (and big hosted dinners), be sure to check for freshness before you use it. Use your nose and smell the mix. If the aroma is gone, then the mixture has lost its potency and should not be used.