Pros: It works; you can use all of a nutmeg; easy on the hands
Cons: Sometimes it has problems
Rating: 3 out of 5
First posted 3/10/2005
My second nutmeg grater was a two-piece acrylic thing. You put a nutmeg in the bottom half and then twist the top on. Spring-loaded tines dig into the nutmeg, and when you twist the knob in the top they grate the nutmeg against the bottom.
Benefits: You can use an entire nutmeg without grating your fingertips off, thanks to the spring-loaded tines. When you get far enough down that the grater is having trouble grating the last of a nutmeg you simply add another nutmeg on top of it, and use it to get the last of the first one. You also get lots of leverage from the large knob and the sharp tines, so you can quickly grate plenty of nutmeg without any wear and tear on arthritis- or tendonitis-stricken hands.
Problems: The slot through which the grated nutmeg falls is a slot, not a set of small holes, and sometimes you end up with slightly large chunks of nutmeg in things. When you get partway through a nutmeg and the bottom surface of it is smooth, sometimes it stops grating and you have to turn it over to get a new surface. Most annoying, because nutmegs are irregularly shaped and because you sometimes need to add a new one on top of the remains of an old one, putting the top on can be a real challenge at times. Sometimes it just doesn’t want to fit and you have to keep rearranging the nutmeg until the tines can bite down in just the right way for the top to fit back on.
When it works this is a fantastic nutmeg grater; unfortunately it doesn’t always work. I’d choose it any day over the old-style classic grater, but ultimately I prefer the Microplane grate-n-shake.