Nutmeg is actually roughly egg-shaped seed of the tree.
Nutmeg is mainly associated with sweet, spicy dishes pies, puddings, custards, cookies and spice cakes. It combines well with many cheeses, and is included in soufflés and cheese sauces. In Indian cuisine, nutmeg powder is used almost exclusively in sweet dishes. It may also be used in small quantities in garam masala. Ground nutmeg is also smoked in India.
Used in small dosages nutmeg can reduce flatulence, aid digestion, improve the appetite and treat diarrhoea, vomiting and nausea. The essential oil is also used in the cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries, for instance, in toothpaste, and as a major ingredient in some cough syrups. In traditional medicine nutmeg and nutmeg oil were used for illnesses related to the nervous and digestive systems.
Externally, the oil is used for rheumatic pain and, like clove oil, can be applied as an emergency treatment to dull toothache. Drops are put on a cotton swab, and applied to the gums around an aching tooth until dental treatment can be obtained. In France, it is given in drop doses in honey for digestive upsets.