Definition of nutmeg in English:

nutmeg

nounPlural nutmegs

  • 1The hard, aromatic, almost spherical seed of a tropical tree.

    • ‘First of all, I did it by eating whole nutmegs, I was cleaning the kitchen and found this thing called nutmeg.’
    • ‘Underneath that is a beautiful red, lacy layer of aril - also called mace blades - that cling to the thin, hard shell surrounding the nutmeg.’
    • ‘The nutmeg is the seed of the Indonesian Myristica fragrans whose small yellow flowers develop into a fleshy, scarlet fruit enclosing the meg.’
    • ‘The bread sauce should be smooth and well-flavoured, mace being a traditional spice (the outside husk of a nutmeg, between the nut and the shell) to infuse with the milk.’
    • ‘The stone is the size of a nutmeg and has a hard, black case, sometimes thick, sometimes thin.’
    1. 1.1mass noun Nutmegs grated and used as a spice.
      ‘hot milk flavoured with nutmeg’
      • ‘Other commonly used spices are ginger, nutmeg, and pepper.’
      • ‘In a saucepan, combine brown sugar, almonds, cinnamon stick, nutmeg, cloves, allspice and wine.’
      • ‘Add the apples, lemon zest, lemon juice, vanilla, black pepper, nutmeg, salt, and cinnamon and sauté until tender, about 10 minutes.’
      • ‘There are many versions of the recipe, some calling for cinnamon only, some also using ginger, cloves and nutmeg.’
      • ‘From Southeast Asia came black pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves.’
      • ‘Four spice is a ground spice mixture usually containing white pepper, nutmeg, ginger, and cinnamon or cloves.’
      • ‘Rosengarten's version calls for 25 ingredients, almost half of them spices like cinnamon and nutmeg.’
      • ‘They planted some of the saplings in Java, a Dutch colony already supplying Europe with pepper, nutmeg, and other spices.’
      • ‘An agricultural country whose chief crop is rice, Sri Lanka is known for spices such as cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, pepper, and cloves.’
      • ‘Sweeten with condensed milk, nutmeg and cinnamon, this hot cereal is a perfect way to start your day.’
      • ‘Then I added Nancy's special mix of spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, and ground cloves’
      • ‘Sift the flour, mixed spice, nutmeg and baking powder together.’
      • ‘To bake the tart, beat the eggs and extra egg yolks with the cream, nutmeg, sea salt and pepper and parsley.’
      • ‘And it was flavored with not just overused cinnamon but with nutmeg and clove as well; those spices did not make the granola noticeably spicy, but rather added fine nuances.’
      • ‘The tequila fills the mouth with a lavish array of warm flavors, largely floral and semi-sweet spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla.’
      • ‘Modern haggis generally has beef suet rather than mutton fat, and cayenne pepper or nutmeg are usual additions.’
      • ‘In a shallow pan, gently heat the milk, bay leaf, nutmeg, salt and pepper.’
      • ‘In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.’
      • ‘They wanted to trade: the market at home was eager (at one time or another) for spices - pepper, nutmeg, mace and cloves.’
      • ‘In the garden they grew cardamom, turmeric, curry leaves and pepper as well as imported ginger, cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, chillies, vanilla, cumin and coriander.’
  • 2The evergreen tree that bears nutmegs, native to the Moluccas.

    Myristica fragrans, family Myristicaceae

    • ‘We emerged into the country to find ourselves amid an open expanse of coconut palms, interspersed with the odd clove and nutmeg tree, banana palm and cinnamon bush.’
    • ‘While the gathering of fallen nuts remains unrestricted, the trees themselves continue to belong to the government as a fundamental component of the nutmeg groves.’
    • ‘However, Run Island figured prominently on seventeenth century maps because of the fragrant nutmeg that grew in abundance there.’
    • ‘Nutmeg, another mystical tree from the Spice Islands, gets the oils distilled from the kernels of its fruits - the nutmeg itself.’
    • ‘This is cardamom country, nutmeg too, where spices grow along the roadside, and where pepper vines wind their tendrils around banana palms and over camellia bushes.’
  • 3Soccer
    informal An instance of playing the ball through an opponent's legs.

    • ‘The nutmeg as Mills tried to shield the ball at the corner flag was a sublime example of justified arrogance.’
    • ‘I put the ball through chairs in the kitchen to practice nutmegs.’
    • ‘The highlights were a nutmeg on the byline, and a blistering run down the wing that left Cole for dead - his cross nearly brought a second goal.’
    • ‘Tevez has earned a corner with a cheeky nutmeg, though.’
    • ‘‘I'm embarrassed for these idiot American newspapermen who don't know anything about football, or what a nutmeg is,’ Mike Manley.’

verbnutmegged, nutmegging, nutmegs

[with object]Soccer
informal
  • Play the ball through the legs of (an opponent)

    ‘Brady drifted past three defenders, nutmegging the third with ease’
    • ‘Next up McFadden, nutmegging Simon Mensing and winning a free-kick.’
    • ‘How did you feel when Henry nutmegged you by the corner flag?’
    • ‘He sped down the flank, nutmegging Robertson and Brown, cut inside and gave the ball back to Lynch for a regulation tap-in.’
    • ‘And the they survived another scare with less than three minutes to go when Paul nutmegged himself trying to deal with another testing Sinfield kick.’
    • ‘He nutmegged a defender on the edge of the box before chipping goalkeeper Paul Kelly, who was virtually on his line, from twenty yards out.’

Origin

Late Middle English notemuge, partial translation of Old French nois muguede, based on Latin nux ‘nut’ + late Latin muscus ‘musk’.

Pronunciation

nutmeg

/ˈnʌtmɛɡ/