Introduction and description
Nutmeg (also known as pala in Indonesia) is one of the two spices – the other being mace – derived from several species of tree in the genus Myristica. The most important commercial species is Myristica fragrans, an evergreen tree indigenous to the Banda Islands in the Moluccas (or Spice Islands) of Indonesia.
Nutmeg is the seed of the tree, whilst mace is the dried "lacy" reddish covering or aril of the seed. It does have a different taste and properties.
One of my abiding memories is of making bread sauce for my Mum for Christmas dinner using mace. White fresh bread soaked in full cream milk and very very gently cooked until it resembles a sauce, to which a pinch of mace is added. The mace makes all the difference and goes extremely well with all white meat.
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