Botanically known as Myristica fragrans, the nutmeg tree originates in Banda, the largest of the Molucca spice islands of Indonesia. The English word nutmeg comes from the Latin nux, meaning nut, and muscat, meaning musky.
Aside from its many culinary uses, nutmeg contains powerful anti-inflammatory plant compounds that act as antioxidants. These may improve mood, blood sugar control, and heart health, though more research is needed on these effects in humans.
Ground nutmeg is ready to use in food and is a delicious addition to squash, lentils, pork, baked goods, porridges, or warm beverages like ciders or lattes.
Store ground nutmeg in an air-tight container away from heat, light, and moisture.
Whole nutmeg will stay fresh indefinitely, but should always be stored away from heat and moisture. If you nutmeg only occasionally, buying whole nutmeg is the best option because each time it is grated it will provide fresh, fragrant, and flavourful spice.