Nutmeg comes from an evergreen tree native to the Spice Islands near Indonesia, but has been cultivated throughout the tropics by both native cultures and foreign. Not only did native cultures find use for them in cuisine and medicine, nutmeg caused a fervor for the English, Dutch, Chinese, Indians, and pretty much anyone else who came in contact with it. Nutmeg is the nut from the Myristica fragrans tree. The fruit surrounding the nut is often candied or turned into preserves, or juiced and turned into a “nutmeg” syrup. The aril around the nutmeg is the spice we call mace. Nutmeg, however, is the primary harvest. The flavor is warm, rich, and intensely aromatic. Tropic wood, cloves, pine, and camphor are the primary flavors; a warm blanket of a scent if there ever was one. It’s something you can cuddle up in, which is why it’s become so prized in both sweet and savory cooking worldwide.
- Spices, Herbs and Seasonings