Mustard

Mustard

Medicine to the Greeks, a spread to the Romans, beloved
by Gallic monks – mustard’s been popular for millennia,
across continents. But it’s in England that it’s at its fiery best.

Origins
Northern-hemispherians have used mustard for 2000 years – adding a palate-punch before Eastern spices arrived. The Romans made it a condiment, grinding seeds with young wine (‘must’) took it to France and, in 1777 created mild Dijon mustard. Jeremiah Colman, a miller from Norwich, restored mustard’s fire – in 1814 he devised a way to powder the seeds without evaporating their heat-giving oils. He was appointed mustardmaker to Queen Victoria.

MAKES 600ML

You’ll need
125g (4½oz) brown mustard
seeds
30g (1oz) yellow mustard
seeds
1 cup (275mL) white-wine
vinegar
1 cup (250mL) beer
125g (4½oz) mustard powder
1 cup (250mL) cold water
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt

Cooking Method
1 Combine the mustard seeds, vinegar and beer in a bowl. Cover and leave for 48 hours. It does not need to be refrigerated.
2 Transfer the mix to a food processor; add the remaining ingredients.
3 Process until smooth (about 5 minutes).
4 Decant into a glass jar; seal and refrigerate.
5 Allow the flavours to develop for 3-4 weeks.
TIP You can buy it in a jar, but making your own mustard means you can control its kick. Plus, mix in a few extras to give your mustard extra punch – the addition of beer seems especially England appropriate...

Tasting notes
English mustard has a colour akin to the contents of a newborn’s nappy. But get over that, this stuff is a taste sensation. Picture the scene: you’ve rocked up for lunch at a traditional boozer – one that hasn’t gone gastro – and a limp ham sandwich has appeared. Your stomach starts to sink, but then... stuffed amid the sticky sachets you spot it: Colman’s English Mustard. A quick squeeze and your snack’s transformed. Your nose starts to burn, your eyes to glisten, your taste buds declare ‘thank you!’ Mustard is the soul-mate of quality produce and the elevator of the mediocre. For the most satisfying combo, eat it with pork pies or cold cuts. Just remember, it’s hot!

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