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All About Spices - 4

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Mace & Nutmeg

Both are found on the same plant. The nutmeg is the inner kernel of the fruit. When ripe, the fruit splits open to reveal bright red arils which lie around the shell of the nutmeg - and once dried are known as mace blades. The flavor of both spices is very similar - warm, sweet and aromatic, although nutmeg is more delicate than mace. Both spices are also sold ground. Use with vegetables; sprinkled over egg dishes, milk puddings and custards; eggnogs and mulled drinks; or use as a flavoring in desserts.

Paprika

Comes from a variety of pepper (capsicum) and although similar in color to cayenne, this bright red powder has a mild flavor.

Pepper

White pepper comes from ripened berries with the outer husks removed. Black pepper comes from unripened berries dried until dark greenish-black in color. Black pepper is more subtle than white. Use white or black peppercorns in marinades and pickling, or freshly ground as a seasoning. Both are available ground. Green peppercorns are also unripe berries with a mild, light flavor. They are canned in brine or pickled, or freeze-dried in jars. They add a pleasant, light peppery flavor to sauces, pates and salad dressings. Drain those packed in liquid and use either whole or mash them lightly before using. Dry green peppercorns should be lightly crushed before using to help release flavor, unless otherwise stated in a recipe.


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