This is such an intriguing fruit; the nutmeg pair let’s call it! It not only produces one delicious spice, it produces two: nutmeg and mace, which can be used interchangeably when cooking. Also, the nutmeg tree has both male and female parts…it’s true! And both need each other in order to bear fruit. How lovely!
As it takes time to build a relationship, to grow together, and to foster love between the male and female parts, the nutmeg trees takes time to produce fruit. It takes about six years to until the nutmeg and mace are ready to harvest…how special it is to find nutmeg! Interesting, that both the male and the female tree produce fruit; although, the female tree is found to yield more fruit and the taste is a bit sweeter than the fruit from the male nutmeg tree.
Although it is challenging to determine the sex of the tree until about six years into harvest, once it is dried, and ready for sale, you can actually tell the gender when purchasing nutmeg at the store! The male is tainted blue and the female is tainted pink… not quite ;)! According to the manager of agriculture here in our back yard, the rougher edged dried nutmeg are male and the smoother edged are female (the color remains the same)! You may be able to taste the difference as well.
Like most of the delicious spices we are featuring for our recipe (the recipe which will be revealed soon), are lovely for digestion: aiding in relief from bloating, gas and stomach pain.
We can enjoy a little sweet relief, from the mace and nutmeg team!