Mustard is a culture..

Mustard is frequently used daily in our cooking recipes, sandwiches, salads, french fries etc. but hardly people give a second thought on how mustard should be treated just like wine; it is a culture of its own and a state-of-art in culinary. To enhance your experience with this great this condiment   and aroma in your food, mustard is a topic worth some research and increase your knowledge about.

What is Mustard? It is a seed that is picked from its own flower.  There are several types of seeds and processing methods that give us different variations of mustards.  There are the light-colored seeds (white or yellow) and darker colored mustard seeds (brown to black).

Here are only some types of mustards that are much appreciated in my dining atmosphere:

Descriptions of the below mustards have been quoted from http://www.thenibble.com/

ENGLISH MUSTARD

A product made from a combination of white plus brown or black mustard seeds, flour and turmeric. It is usually bright yellow in color with an extremely hot spiciness. It is particularly enjoyed with beef and sausages.

BLACKCURRANT MUSTARD

A fruit mustard made by blending black currants into Dijon mustard. This produces a beautiful raspberry-colored, slightly-sweet (although not sugar enhanced) mustard that makes an elegant plate garnish, is used to flavor sauces for duck, rabbit and game, and to make sparkling vinaigrettes.

DIJON

Dijon, in the province of Burgundy, France, has been a gourmet center since early times. The mustard developed there was based on particularly strong and piquant mustard seeds grown in the chalky soil and densely wooded terrain. The seeds were carefully selected and harvested on sites that were rich in potassium and carbon. Today’s Dijon is not the original product developed in monasteries: in 1856 Jean Naigeon, a local producer, revived the flagging industry by substitutingverjus for vinegar and creating a smoother, less biting product (today, white wine is most often used). Today’s product is also made with brown mustard seeds instead of black, owing to the difficulty of growing the latter. While Dijon mustard was the first to be regulated, it is not covered by a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) or a Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) under the auspices of the European Union. Thus, while there are large mustard plants in Dijon and its environs, most Dijon mustard is Dijon-style, manufactured outside of Dijon.

BURGUNDY MUSTARD

A Dijon mustard flavored with Burgundy wine, creating an aromatic mustard with hints of grape.

GREEN PEPPERCORN MUSTARD

A medium-hot mustard, good to pair with beef, chicken, duck breast or omelets

MEAUX MUSTARD or MOUTARDE DE MEAUX or WHOLE GRAIN MUSTARD

Often called the “king of mustards” and enjoyed by connoisseurs, this rich mustard with a slightly nutty flavor is made of roughly crushed multi-colored mustard seeds mixed with vinegar and spices. The thick and rich mustard has been used by chefs for almost 400 years in salad dressings and as coatings for meat and fish. It is traditionally packed in stone crocks.

ROQUEFORT MUSTARD

If you like blue cheese and mustard, you’ll love this. Actual Roquefort cheese is blended into the mustard, creating a delightful infusion of rich flavors to accompany meat and pasta dishes, canapés, hard-boiled eggs…even to use as a dip.

As a good mustard consumer for my above selection in this condiment world my go to brand is Maille.  Who can do it better than the French? Their store in Madeleine, Paris treats you with well an ocean of selection of samples with crackers. You try your mustard enjoy the texture and the ‘amuse-bouche’ and choose your favorite. If you are in town make sure to pop by.

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