6 Best Nutmeg Graters | January 2017

6 Best Nutmeg Graters
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Fragrance rich nutmeg is one of the highly prized spices known since ancient times for its aromatic, aphrodisiac and curative properties. If you prefer it's taste fresh rather than store bought, then try one of these nutmeg graters. Good for using with a variety of nuts and spices, these grinders take the hard work out of preparing any dish. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best nutmeg grater on Amazon.
This elegant little Cole & Mason Classic Nutmeg grinder turns even the toughest nutmeg seeds into fine powder. It has an easy-to-grip hourglass shape, though its knob and rotating arm are not all that comfortable to operate.
  • serrated stainless-steel blade
  • only accommodates single nutmeg
  • creates grinds of inconsistent size
Brand Cole & Mason
Model H277130AZ
Weight 0.8 ounces
Rating 4.0 / 5.0
The Cade Manual Rotary Spice Mill has four internal claws that hold nutmeg in place during the grinding process, making for a more efficient use of your time and getting the most possible spice out of each nutmeg.
  • crystal clear acrylic exterior
  • sealed design keeps fingers safe
  • unit lacks a manual
Model G-01
Weight 6.4 ounces
Rating 3.8 / 5.0
The Microplane Grate and Shake Nutmeg grinder/grater makes it easy to use the exact amount of spice you want, as it stores the grated nutmeg you produce in a separate chamber from which you can then take a pinch or a scoop.
  • also good for cinnamon sticks
  • 100% dishwasher safe
  • plastic components feel cheap
Brand Microplane
Model 34001
Weight 1.6 ounces
Rating 4.2 / 5.0
Kitchen tools don't get much simpler or cheaper than the Norpro 335 Nutmeg Grater, which is a very low-tech, but still effective, way to get the pulverized nutmeg you need for your cooking or for flavoring a holiday beverage.
  • features a storage compartment
  • hand washing recommended
  • not suitable for high volume cooking
Brand Norpro
Model 335
Weight 1.6 ounces
Rating 4.9 / 5.0
If you have a whole lot of nutmeg to grind, then save your wrists some strain and opt for the Cuisinart SG10C Electric Spice/Nut grinder. Its heavy-duty electric motor can pulverize even the toughest seeds, nuts, and herbs.
  • one-touch operation
  • dishwasher safe components
  • stores unused spices in grinding bowl
Brand Cuisinart
Model SG-10C
Weight 2.5 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0
The William Bounds Twister Nutmeg Mill is both handsome and effective, sporting chrome hardware and a clear top that lets you see the progress you're making on those chunks of nutmeg, so you can stop when you have enough ground.
  • comes with six whole nutmegs
  • easy-turning crank design
  • lifetime warranty against defects
Brand William Bounds
Model 7000
Weight 8.8 ounces
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

Buyer's Guide

Spicing Things Up: The Nutmeg Grater

Sourced from trees in the Myristica genus native to islands in the Indian Ocean, the nutmeg seed usually measures about one inch in length and is too tough for any practical use as a whole piece. But grated into a fine powder, nutmeg is nutritious, delicious, and perennial popular, used in a range of cuisines around the world and also prized for its ability to be used in creating essential oils.

As nutmeg has been a popular spice for many centuries now, various methods and tools have long been used to grind the solid nut into a usable powdered form. Nutmeg graters (which were often carried by members of high society in 17th century Europe, fresh nutmeg being a prized addition to the popular punch beverages of the day) consist of little more than a metal surface perforated with sharp rasps. When passed back and forth against the surface of a nutmeg seed, the rasps remove bits of the nutmeg, usually channeling it down a tube-shaped internal column for collection or for direct application to foods or beverages.

A handheld rasp-style nutmeg grater might not be the most elegant tool a chef owns, but in fact it may well be the best possible device for producing ground nutmeg. These simple graters put complete control of the process into the cook's hands, with a person able to regulate the coarseness of the grinds based on pressure applied and to stop grinding the seed precisely as soon as he or she has produced enough powdered nutmeg. On the other hand, such grater also almost fully preclude the complete use of any seed, as a person risks cutting their fingers on the rasps once the seed has grown too small. And while excellent for controlling minute amounts of grated nutmeg, such a tool is also much less efficient than other more mechanically-inclined options when you have large quantities of ground nutmeg to produce.

If you wish to produce a good deal of greater nutmeg and you also value the aesthetics associated with gourmet food preparation, consider a rotary-style nutmeg mill. These tools place a nutmeg seed (or several) in a closed chamber topped by a hand-turned crank usually connected to a group of claws that hold the seed in place and apply downward pressure. When operated, the rotating twists the seed against a series of rasps or teeth, shaving bits of nutmeg with ease.

Finally, there are spice grinders that make the process even easier for you by using an electric motor to provide the torque. These devices lack the aesthetic charm of a hand-operated mill, and they might make it hard to grind precisely the amount of spice needed for a given recipe or beverage topping, but they are unmatched in simplicity of function. As long as you have an airtight jar or another receptacle on hand to store the excess ground nutmeg an electric grater will likely produce, they are a fine choice for any kitchen, cocktail bar, or coffee shop where the spice is routinely used.

The Secret Use of Nutmeg You Don't Know About

Nutmeg, like most spices, is never a central ingredient in any recipe; in fact, it is rarely even meant to define the flavor profile of a given meal or beverage, but rather to add a bit of complexity to the food or drink. Nutmeg is experienced by most palates as sweet and nutty, with enough camphor-like spice to be harsh in large quantities but easily mellowed by foods such as dairy or rice products and balanced by the bright and crisp flavors of citrus fruits.

When most people think of nutmeg, they likely first picture an inviting glass of eggnog served during the holidays spiked with some rum or brandy and topped by grated spices. Nutmeg is a popular topper or addition to myriad beverages beyond eggnog, of course, used in a range of alcoholic punches and in coffee and cocoa drinks. It is also commonly sprinkled over or baked into pies, pastries, and breads, and is an important ingredient in dishes such as Indonesian Oxtail Soup, Middle Eastern Al Kabsa, and Scottish haggis.

Beyond its use in the kitchen, nutmeg also has noted benefits when refined into an essential oil. Achieve through the distillation of ground nutmeg, the oil sourced from nutmeg contains several organic chemicals (mostly terpenoids and phenylpropenes) such as geraniol and safrol. The oil is used in oral hygiene products, cough suppressant medicines, and in tinctures designed to soothe stomach and intestinal issues. It can also be used to invigorate a massage oil or as part of an aromatherapy regimen intended to enhance the relaxation and tranquility of a user.

As nutmeg can have generally undesired side effects when consumed in too great a dose, including indigestion, headache, and even induction of hallucinatory and/or otherwise psychoactive episodes, it is best kept out of reach of children and consumed only in moderation.

The Spicy History of Nutmeg

As mentioned above, nutmeg is native to a number of Indian Ocean islands known, fittingly enough as, the Spice Islands. It was one of many prized and rare spices that were wildly popular in the west during the Middle Ages and Renaissance -- cinnamon, pepper, and cloves were also highly sought after -- both for its culinary uses and for its perceived medicinal characteristics. (It was thought for many centuries that nutmeg and certain other spices could help to prevent infection with the bubonic plague.)

However the spice's history goes back many hundreds of years before the Medieval period. In fact the use of nutmeg and other spices was popular among ancient civilizations including Rome. The breakdown of the Roman Empire in the first centuries of the Common Era saw a dramatic reduction in global trade, which subsequently meant much less spice imported to the western world.

As trade between Europe and the so-called Orient was reestablished and began to flourish in the late 15th century, so too did the access to an demand for spices reignite. Soon nutmeg was among a number of products commanding such a high price that it helped to change the very balance of the political world. Smaller countries with powerful maritime trading traditions, such as Portugal and The Netherlands, would rise to (relatively brief) global prominence as powerhouses of trade. The Dutch East India Company in particular brought vast amounts of wealth and clout to the peoples of The Netherlands, establishing trade routes, plantations, and waging wars of conquest over natives and against competing European parties.

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Last updated on January 23, 2017 by multiple members of the ezvid wiki editorial staff

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