June 18, 2010
The botanical name of the Nutmeg tree is Myristica fragrans. The Nutmeg tree is a tropical evergreen tree, which was originally only found in the Spice Islands of Indonesia. Introduced to India by colonial traders, Nutmeg now grows abundantly in the spice plantations of Kerala. The Nutmeg tree can grow up to 20 meters. The Nutmeg fruit looks similar to an Apricot. When the fruit is ripe, it splits revealing a crimson seed cover and a brown seed. The seed cover is harvested and dried as the spice called Mace. The seed is gathered as Nutmeg. Its shell is broken and the Nutmeg kernels, which are grayish-brown, oval-shaped seeds, with rough surfaces, are collected. Nutmeg is powered and used to add flavor to many dishes and is also used in the perfume industry. Nutmeg also has medicinal properties and is used in the form of oil to treat rheumatism.