Showing posts with label Mustard. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Mustard. Show all posts

Jun 10, 2016

Mustard Facts

People have been eating mustard since biblical times.

Mustard's variety is staggering, but it all comes down to one plant in the Brassica family and three types of seeds it produces: white, also referred to as yellow, because it is light yellow in color; brown, and black. The majority of commercial mustard is made with white or brown mustard seeds, or a mix of the two.

Black seeds are rarely used for mustard. They are sold whole at Indian markets and are common in Indian cooking.

Prepared mustard in a jar is: dried mustard seeds mixed with water and some other liquid, typically vinegar to get that chemical reaction going. Dry mustard or mustard flour is the dried seeds ground to a fine powder. It is in the spice section of the store.

Brown seeds carry more pronounced heat than white seeds. The addition of other ingredients, such as wine or beer instead of vinegar, spices, herbs and the degree to which the seeds are milled give prepared mustard its personality and flavor.

Yellow or American ballpark - The classic hot dog condiment gets its bright hue from turmeric, not from the ground white seeds from which it’s made. It is acidic, but not spicy hot.

Dijon - A silky smooth mustard made with brown seeds. Dijon is made in Dijon, France and must adhere to strict standards as defined by the government, but no such US standards exist. What is sold in the US as 'Dijon-style' mustard is less flavorful than the original.

Deli or American brown - This deli staple made from brown seeds is mildly spicy and not as tart as yellow mustard.

Chinese - Hot dry mustard is ground brown seeds mixed with water. The mustard that comes with egg rolls at a Chinese restaurant is in this category.

English - This mustard is made from white and brown seeds. It is most often seen in powdered form, but also sold in jars.

German - These mustards range in flavor, texture, and heat, but the two most popular styles, both made primarily with the brown seed, are hot and smooth. Bavarian-style, is coarser, milder, and sweeter.

Whole or coarse grain - This is made from a mix of whole and ground seeds, usually the brown.

Mustard, whole mustard seeds, and dry mustard retain their flavor for years. Keep both in a dark, cool spot. Jar mustard, even flavored ones can last for well over a year, but may lose its zing over time. The best way to keep jar mustard fresh is to refrigerate before even opening.

Incidentally, there is a National Mustard Museum in Middleton, Wisconsin, US.

Apr 19, 2013


The oriental mustard plant originally started growing in the foothills of the Himalayas, but migrated to the USA, UK, Denmark, and Canada.

Mild white mustard grows wild in North Africa, the Middle East, and Europe and has also spread. Black mustard is grown in Argentina, China, the US, and Canada.

Canada and Nepal are the world's major producers of mustard seed, between them accounting for about 57% of world production in 2010. The United Sates receives 43% of Canada's total output of mustard seeds.

May 6, 2011

Rape and Rapeseed

Rapeseed, sometimes called Rape, is a plant cultivated for its seed to make oils, bio-diesel, and animal food. It is a member of the mustard family, along with turnips, radishes, cabbage, and watercress, among others.

Rapeseed was the third leading source of vegetable oil in the world in 2000. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, after soybean and oil palm. Its saturated fat is 6% vs. palm oil at 79%.

Canola is a trademark for a hybrid variety of rape initially bred in Canada (Canola is an acronym for Canadian Oil, Low Acid). Canadian Rape growers renamed the oil back in the 1970s to get away from the negative connotation of the 'rape' name. (Like how prunes are now called dried plums.)

Rapeseed oil was produced in the 19th century as a source of a lubricant for steam engine and now makes into a bio-diesel. Rapeseed leaves and stems are also edible and some cook it like spinach or bok choy.  Despite of some lingering, but incorrect internet rumors, canola oil is not bad for you.

Apr 15, 2011

Four Uses for Mustard

Romans were first introduced to mustard seeds by the Egyptians. They mixed unfermented grape juice with ground mustard, and called this concoction "must" - hence mustard!

For Sore Throat - Combine mustard, the juice of one half of a fresh lemon, one tablespoon of salt, one tablespoon of honey, and one half cup of boiling water. Mix the ingredients thoroughly. Let the mixture cool for 10 minutes. Take some in your mouth and gargle! Warning: this concoction will not taste of smell good. After a few rounds of gargling, your throat should be feeling a lot less sore.

To remove bad smells, use some mustard and hot water and wipe over surface.

Drippyness' can be induced to encourage decongestion by rubbing some mustard on your chest. Place a cloth, damp with hot water, on top of the mustard. Within minutes, you will feel better.

Soothe aching muscles  Combine 2 tablespoons of mustard and 1 teaspoon of Epsom salts in your warm running bath water. Mustard will amplify the therapeutic effects of the salts, relieving you of muscle pains. As a bonus, you can also use mustard on your hot dogs and hamburgers.