Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Homemade Mustard

One of my goals this year is to learn to make the condiments I use most. That means mustard, ketchup, barbecue sauce, and mayonnaise. Then I want to go a step further and grow as much of the ingredients as possible. Of course not all in one year's time. It will be an ongoing project for years to come. I have grown brown and white mustard seed one summer three years ago but the harvest wasn't great. My first mistake was putting the seed in the not so fertile old garden. I plan on doing that again this summer. Not the putting it in the old garden but in growing a new crop. Then if all goes well I need to work on a screen that separates the seeds and the chaff. The brown mustard seeds are much smaller than the white and that might create the need for two screens. Then of course I need to come up with a good mustard mixture or two or three if lucky. 

Right now I have just one Ball Park Mustard mixture that I'm not real happy with. It has too much of a bite to it and my tongue gets hung up on the heat and can't find the flavor. It is a problem I have with many peppers and sauces made with them. And yes, mustard has the same hot stuff that peppers have in them so while hubby and our oldest daughter's tongues are finding a wonderful melody in many sauces, mine just screams FIRE!!! It must be a taste bud thing. 
That is my problem with this mustard recipe. I mixed in a little sugar and a little more salt after three weeks of it sitting on the counter but it still is hot. I'm going to do a little more research and tweak the batch once more. Then I think I'll mix another batch up. Was it cold water or was it hot that I'm suppose to use to cool down the heat. I've forgotten but it make a difference I'm told. Plus aging on the counter top versus in the refrigerator changes the heat too. After that is tamed then maybe I can taste the other ingredients and find that melody the family talks about but eludes me. When I get that far I can play with brown mustard and white mustard combinations. There is black mustard too but I'll probably never get that far.

I started with a mustard powder with this recipe. But to be self-sufficient, I need to move on to grinding it myself.  Hmmmmm.... how can I do that with the equipment I have on hand? Would we like a crushed method better? That would be easier to achieve? So many questions and as yet, no answers.

I do know I want to use mustard more in cooking. Not just on hamburgers but in cream sauces or in soups or ..... I don't know yet. My only familiarity with mustard is Ball Park, honey mustard, or Dijon needs expanding. Yes, I'm really mustard naive.
But a girl has to start somewhere so Ball Park it is. The mustard of my youth. 
So far the Ball Park Mustard recipe doesn't resemble Ball Park I've ever tasted but that could be my fault. I don't know what I'm doing. 

One thing I know for certain is making mustard was eezy peezy when you buy the powder and I will work from there.

Meanwhile I'll keep hoping the vinegar in the pantry does its thing and I can use it in up coming mustard mixtures. But for now my goal is simply to create a batch of mustard that turns out better than my first.

 An added bonus is that mustard is in the Brassicas family and inhibits the growth of existing cancer cells and prevents them from forming. Surprising how many anti cancer things I'm finding that were a common table fair of our ancestors.

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