Nutmeg is the seed of Myristica fragrans, an evergreen tree native to the Molucca Islands. Interestingly, the tree produces both Nutmeg and mace, and grows up to 60 feet tall. Although the tree takes seven years to bear fruit, it may produce until the 90th year. Both spices come from the tree’s fruit, which splits into a scarlet outer membrane, mace, and an inner brown seed, Nutmeg.
Nutmeg is grown in Indonesia and Grenada.
Ground nutmeg has been milled to a rough powder form and, although convenient, tends to lose its flavor and aroma quickly. Perfect for sweet pastries or savory meals.
Taste and Aroma Description: Nutmeg is more pungent and sweeter than mace.
Storage Tips: Store in cool, dark, dry places.
The sweet but slightly bitter flavor of Nutmeg adds character to vegetables. A little goes a long way so try 1/8 teaspoon per 4 servings to start. Just sprinkle it lightly over veal, fish, or chicken for a surprising snap. Use as a topping for whipped cream, custard, and eggnog. Ground Nutmeg is an ideal baking spice and is especially complimentary in sweet breads, cakes, muffins, cookies, and fruit pies.