Is it a nut?
Nope, nutmeg’s actually the seed of the tropical evergreen nutmeg tree, which grows in exotic, sun-soaked places like Grenada and Indonesia. Another potent spice, mace, comes from the seed’s covering. Fact.
Amongst a big bunch of (possible) health benefits, it’s said to ease pain, aid indigestion and help skin conditions like eczema and acne. It can also be good for insomnia, so try a sprinkle of nutmeg in some warm milk before bed to bring on the zzzs.
How to buy and try
Buy it either whole or in powdered form. Freshly grated nutmeg is way better for flavour so if you want the real deal, buy the whole seed and get yourself one of those cute mini graters (standard size graters do a perfectly good job too).
Here’s a top cook’s tip – heat weakens the spice hit so add nutmeg towards the end of cooking.
Serve it up in…
Creamy, cheesy dishes are a great match for nutmeg as it gives the mild flavours depth and a nice spicy warmth. Try this oozy fettuccine alfredo and you’ll see what we mean.
Or have it to hand to use in loads of different dishes (think seafood, chips, pizza, fried chicken…) by creating this knock out Chesapeake Bay seasoning mix. Store it and use within a month for full freshness.
Get your Christmas dose
We’ll finish with this decadent tahini hot cocoa, best sipped by the fire in your new Crimbo jammies. With nutmeg’s sleep inducing properties (and after all the fun of the big day) you’ll be off to the land of nod in no time.