Wednesday, February 18, 2015

A Tale of Two Spices: Banana Bread and Mace

It amazes me how much I continue to learn about cooking, baking, and nutrition. For example, it is amazing how many spices there are from all-spice to za'atar? There are spices that define cooking from the North, East coast, West Coast, and of course from my beloved Southern states of the USA.

One of the new recipe books that I received for Christmas included a recipe for banana bread and mace. What?!? I immediately thought of the defense spray mace, but this is different. Mace inside the defensive spray is a concentration of a substance from hot chili peppers. Mace that is used in cooking is actually kin to nutmeg.

Nutmeg is a brown spice. When whole, it is an oval-shaped pit. Nutmeg can be found dried or whole. It is a warm spice that pairs well with cinnamon and is used most often in baking. It is also used in some savory cooking. For example, many of the recipes I have for b├ęchamel sauce (aka white sauce) calls for a little bit of ground nutmeg.

Mace comes from the same plant as nutmeg. Mace is bright red and actually surrounds nutmeg when both are on the nutmeg tree.  Mace is more red than nutmeg. The taste of mace is more concentrated and peppery in my opinion.

I hope you've learned a little something today in "RD school" about spice and baking. For more recipes, encouragement, and tips for healthy eating, follow me, RDtipoftheday, on PinterestInstagram, and Twitter. You can subscribe to this blog,, through BlogLovin.

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