I use a lot of nutmeg – it’s good in spinach, white sauces, with apple, and on veal.

it's not as beautiful as my first grater, but it works much better

it’s not as beautiful as my first grater, but it works much better

For some years I have been using a standard, rather nice-looking wooden nutmeg grater. I found the bottom kept coming off mid-grind, and it only held one nutmeg – always nearly extinct and no replacements in immediate view.

I grew so dissatisfied with it I developed a new approach – scraping with a sharp knife. This was messy and occasionally ended in tears.

I discovered the tiny graters which come free with some bottles of nutmegs were less than useless.

So I embarked on a major nutmeg grater research programme.  And I now have this unfortunately rather functional looking, but thankfully very literally functional, grater. It’s made by GEFU, a german firm, so perhaps it’s not surprising that it is so well engineered or designed.

Why do I like it? It has a strong, retractable sprung claw mechanism which doesn’t drop off; it has a retractable handle which makes it easy to store; it’s got an integrated storage space for replacement nutmegs – no last minute riffling through the larder; and it has a cap at the base which keeps the freshness in, and ensures you release the ground nutmeg over the food it’s intended for and not all over the worktop. You can, of course, get it from amazon.

…. and dammit, I have just noticed that you can also get a very good mill at Lakeland which does most of these things, and is a bit cheaper.