USES OF NUTMEG
 
 
 
 
About Nutmeg
 
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Uses Of Nutmeg
 
NutmegHistory
 
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Nutmeg
 
Culinary uses
 

Nutmeg and mace have similar taste qualities, nutmeg having a slightly sweeter and mace a more delicate flavor. Mace is often preferred in light-coloured dishes for the bright orange, saffron-like colour it imparts. It is nice in cheese sauces and is best grated fresh (see nutmeg grater). In Indian cuisine, nutmeg is used almost exclusively in sweets. It is known as jaiphal in most parts of India. It is also used in small quantities in garam masala. In other European cuisine, nutmeg and mace are used especially in potato dishes and in processed meat products; they are also used in soups, sauces and baked goods. Japanese varieties of curry powder include nutmeg as an ingredient. Nutmeg is a traditional ingredient in mulled cider, mulled wine, and eggnog.

Nutmeg is usually associated with sweet, spicy dishes — pies, puddings, custards, cookies and spice cakes. It combines well with many cheeses, and is included in soufflés and cheese sauces. In soups it works with tomatoes, slit pea, chicken or black beans. It complements egg dishes and vegetables like cabbage, spinach, broccoli, beans onions and eggplant. It flavours Italian mortadella sausages, Scottish haggis and Middle Eastern lamb dishes. It is often included as part of the Moroccan spice blend ras el hanout. It is indispensable to eggnog and numerous mulled wines and punches.
One whole nutmeg grated equals 2 to 3 teaspoons of ground nutmeg.

 
Essential oils
 
The essential oil is obtained by the steam distillation of ground nutmeg and is used heavily in the perfumery and pharmaceutical industries. The oil is colorless or light yellow and smells and tastes of nutmeg. It contains numerous components of interest to the oleochemical industry, and is used as a natural food flavouring in baked goods, syrups (e.g. Coca Cola), beverages, sweets etc. It replaces ground nutmeg as it leaves no particles in the food. The essential oil is also used in the cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries for instance in tooth paste and as major ingredient in some cough syrups. In traditional medicine nutmeg and nutmeg oil were used for illnesses related to the nervous and digestive systems. Myristicin and elemicin are believed to be the chemical constituents responsible for the subtle hallucinogenic properties of nutmeg oil. Other known chemical ingredients of the oil are α-pinene, sabinene, γ-terpinene and safrole. Externally, the oil is used for rheumatic pain and, like clove oil, can be applied as an emergency treatment to dull toothache. Put 1-2 drops on a cotton swab, and apply to the gums around an aching tooth until dental treatment can be obtained. In France, it is given in drop doses in honey for digestive upsets and used for bad breath. Use 3-5 drops on a sugar lump or in a teaspoon of honey for nausea, gastroenteritis, chronic diarrhea, and indigestion. Alternatively a massage oil can be created by diluting 10 drops in 10 ml almond oil. This can be used for muscular pains associated with rheumatism or overexertion. It can also be combined with thyme or rosemary essential oils. To prepare for childbirth, massaging the abdomen daily in the three weeks before the baby is due with a mixture of 5 drops nutmeg oil and no more than 5 drops sage oil in 25 ml almond oil has been suggested.
 
Attributed Medicinal Properties
 
Used in small dosages nutmeg can reduce flatulence, aid digestion, improve the appetite and treat diarrhea, vomiting and nausea. Nutmeg’s flavour and fragrance come from oil of myristica, containing myristicin, a poisonous narcotic. Myristicin can cause hallucinations, vomiting, epileptic symptoms and large dosages can cause death. These effects will not be induced, however, even with generous culinary usage.
 
 


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