From Madagascar. Love hot cider? Studded ham? Then you’ve encountered whole cloves, those slightly bitter, fruity stabs of peppery flavor and aroma that pairs with cinnamon. Like the promise of a good book, whole cloves deliver intense flavor. Unfortunately, they must be removed before eating. Many cooks prefer ground cloves because they impart a milder flavor (only the stem part is ground) which can be added to baked goods, fruits, sweet potatoes, winter squash, rice, sauces, curries and meats with no fuss.