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Why We Call for Freshly Grated Nutmeg

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By Ronne Day

The seed of a tropical evergreen tree (Myristica fragrans), nutmeg is a wonderfully versatile spice that can be used in both sweet (see “Thanksgiving Desserts, Beyond Pumpkin Pie“) and savory (see “Mad about Mashes“) dishes. Though ground nutmeg is available in supermarkets, buying whole nutmeg (which lasts indefinitely, unlike the pre-ground stuff) and grating it yourself with a fine rasp-style grater ensures the release of essential oils for the spice’s full richness and depth of flavor. Since freshly grated nutmeg is fluffier than ground, pack it into the teaspoon when measuring.


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