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I've posted this is "General" instead of "Cooking", because at least at first I'd like to talk about Mustard as a commercial product instead of as a spice or cooking additive.

I hated Mustard as a kid.  My mom's a wonderful woman, but was far from sophisticated in this department.  I eventually figured out that my hatred of mustard stemmed from exposure to nothing but French's, and occasionally Gulden's Mustard.  

As a legacy of this, to this day, I STILL put only Ketchup onto my hot dogs.

Am I the only middle-class trasher who was almost ruined on mustard by consumption of bad examples of this fine condiment?

In my dottage I've learned to love the stuff--especially the more exotic varieties.  Grey Poupon is the first mustard I ever tasted that I liked, but this many years later I consider it very pedestrian.

Here are a few current favorites:

Honeycup - much immitated, rarely surpassed... eat it with a spoon, eat it with a fork, eat it on bread... just eat it already.

 HCP100.JPG

Westbrae Asian-Style Mustard (with Wasabi) - not shown, but some of the other fine Westbrae Mustards are.  I haven't even tried the other Westbraes, but its mostly because any time I see the Asian-Style I just pick up another of that type... :)

stone.gif

Bone Suckin' Mustard - the name says it all, and nothing at the same time.  Maybe this quote from their website says it better: "Brown sugar, molasses, paprika & jalapenos make Bone Suckin' Sweet Hot Mustard so good you'll want to eat it with a spoon"

 bsm12oz.jpg

So what are some of your faves?  If the thread slows down we can always switch to talking about what you make with your lovely mustard...

Jon Lurie, aka "jhlurie"

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Good and bad.  The good, banally obvious really - Maille from Dijon.*  Surprisingly bad, an allegedly Bavarian style mustard I picked up at Schaller and Weber.  Very sweet indeed, and viscous in a creepy kind of way.**

*I expect someone will now tell me why this is the worst mustard in the world.

**I realise that at this point the thread could plummet downhill.  Please behave yourselves.***

***If I add footnotes to my posts, I think it;s only fair Plotnicki should provide an index to his.   :raz:

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If possible, along with discussion of various commercial mustards in general, I'd also find it nice if someone knowledgeable could initiate me into the secrets of Black mustard.  I understand that a few commercial products are made with it, but are they any good?  I imagine that it has to be diluted to a much greater extent than White/Yellow or Brown.

Jon Lurie, aka "jhlurie"

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Eastport Maine is about as far North as one can go along the Downeast Maine Coast.  At one point in time, Eastport was a major port for the Maine sardine industry.  That's pretty much faded nowadays.

Still around is Ray's Mustard Mill, which was founded to supply the mustard used in canning sardines.  The last local sardine factory stopped using real mustard a couple of years ago, but Ray's is still going strong, both as a retail and mail order provider of classic and yup-scale mustard and offering tours (don't try during lunch time) of their mustard factory (a large couple of rooms behind the retail store).

I'm a fan of Ray's Factory Mustard (also sold as Downeast Mustard).  It's the same mustard provided to the sardine factories - thinner than most, a nice kick, and great for hot dogs.  Rays also produces a bunch of flavored muscles.

Their website:  Ray's Mustard

Also:  Ray's Mustard Mill at HollyEats.Com

Holly Moore

"I eat, therefore I am."

HollyEats.Com

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Sorry to confound your expectations, Wilfrid. Maille Dijon is my current condiment of choice.  I confess, however, that I also enjoy regular old Gulden's Spicy Brown.  Honeycup is also a pesonal fave.  What's that grainy kind that comes in a ceramic crock?  The name escapes me, but I enjoy that as well.  Hmmm, have I nothing new to contribute?  Uh, no, not at all.  Keep the Colman's to yourself.  

Holly, "flavored muscles?"  That may be a different thread for an altogether different kind of discussion...   :raz:

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I vote for Maille as well.

"I've caught you Richardson, stuffing spit-backs in your vile maw. 'Let tomorrow's omelets go empty,' is that your fucking attitude?" -E. B. Farnum

"Behold, I teach you the ubermunch. The ubermunch is the meaning of the earth. Let your will say: the ubermunch shall be the meaning of the earth!" -Fritzy N.

"It's okay to like celery more than yogurt, but it's not okay to think that batter is yogurt."

Serving fine and fresh gratuitous comments since Oct 5 2001, 09:53 PM

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Holly, "flavored muscles?"  That may be a different thread for an altogether different kind of discussion...

One of the advantages to being a moderator is that I could invisibly edit my original post and subsequent readers will have no idea of what you speak.   :raz:

But I will save such power for an even more embarrassing moment which I am surely capable of achieving.

Holly Moore

"I eat, therefore I am."

HollyEats.Com

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I used to rely on Maille for all my Dijon needs.  But for a long time now the only Maille available to me (here in California) is dosed with citric acid.  A big detriment to flavor, in my opinion.

There may well be different formulas shipped to different places, one imagines, if one also is imagining that one is being short-changed whilst the rest of the world fairly drowns in citric-acid-free Maille Dijon mustard.

So I peruse mustard labels everywhere, and manage somehow.  German markets, I can offer from experience, perhaps to no one's surprise, are good places to shop for mustards.  Pizen short on the Dijons, though.

Priscilla

Priscilla

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I've had the Westbrae stoneground and dijon mustards. I don't recommend them. They're not terrible but they're not too good either.

My new favorite mustard is Barker's New Zealand Pineapple Mustard. My housemate brought it back from her recent trip to NZ and it is the best sweet-type mustard I've ever eaten. Once I smeared it on a vegetarian bratwurst and topped it with a Thai slaw I'd made and nearly swooned it was so good.

www.barkers.co.nz

I also like Trader Joe's Sweet and Hot Mustard on pretzels.

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eat it with a spoon, eat it with a fork, eat it on bread...
Sorry, I'm too old to cut the mustard. :biggrin:

I'm surprised no one has mentioned making their own. The Mustard Store website contains loads of information, including reference to Helen Sawyer's excellent _Gourmet Mustards_. I gave my copy to the SF Chronicle's Marlena Spieler, and she's hotter than ever!

And there's Coleman's English mustard, available either as a powder or mixed. This is ferocious stuff, but a country (the US) that's gone mad on lethal chiles ought to lap it up.

John Whiting, London

Whitings Writings

Top Google/MSN hit for Paris Bistros

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Not only is Maille awesome, all the Maille's are.  Some are only available in France (maybe it's the citric acid thing, I'll have to compare).  My favorites

Maille Provence Mustard (made with red peppers)

Maille Taragon Mustard

Maille Dijon with Horseradish

Now Trader Joe's has larger squeeze bottles of Maille regular so I don't go through my Paris stash in a few months (I brought back 14  jars, including the above, Hazelnut mustard, Mustard with Roquefort (or some blue cheese), with Black Berries, on and on).

beachfan

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I think I'm a mustard purist  :sad:

Seems to me that mustard should be a product made from mustard seed, and it's a specific additive to a meal designed to impart a specific flavor, which is the 'strong' flavor of mustard seed.

If I also want to add the flavor of honey to my meal, then I will get a jar of honey. If I want to add the flavor of jalapenos or red peppers, then I will put a plate of jalapenos or red peppers on the table. I don't like the idea of these packaged convenience additives. For me, that turns mustard into more of a pickle concept, which is based on an amalgam of competing flavors. Oh the burden of the mustard purist is indeed a heavy one  :sad:

Of all the world's mustards, John has indeed identified the King --- Colman's English.

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I don't like the idea of these packaged convenience additives.
I tend to agree. It's not that these specialist mustards don't taste good, it's just that every time you use one the food tastes exactly the same. I like Helen Sawyer's book because it's a useful guide to varying flavors, even of mustards that have already been made up.

I keep several balsamic vinegars on hand for the same reason. (I can only afford the middle-priced varieties.)

Perhaps I bore easily. :smile:

John Whiting, London

Whitings Writings

Top Google/MSN hit for Paris Bistros

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It's not that these specialist mustards don't taste good, it's just that every time you use one the food tastes exactly the same.

Well put, John. Yes, yes, yes. And this is true for all vile things such as bottled salad dressings.

I use Maille when I want Dijon. I use Colman's or Keene's powder when I want to make a particular mustard, say with ginger. I use mustard seeds (I have jars of three different kinds) that I either toast or warm in clarified butter or olive oil when I want just a mustardish component.

Still, I can see a specialist mustard like jalapeno flavoured for something like a hot dog or a pastrami sandwich.

"I've caught you Richardson, stuffing spit-backs in your vile maw. 'Let tomorrow's omelets go empty,' is that your fucking attitude?" -E. B. Farnum

"Behold, I teach you the ubermunch. The ubermunch is the meaning of the earth. Let your will say: the ubermunch shall be the meaning of the earth!" -Fritzy N.

"It's okay to like celery more than yogurt, but it's not okay to think that batter is yogurt."

Serving fine and fresh gratuitous comments since Oct 5 2001, 09:53 PM

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I use Maille when I want Dijon. I use Colman's or Keene's powder when I want to make a particular mustard, say with ginger. I use mustard seeds (I have jars of three different kinds) that I either toast or warm in clarified butter or olive oil when I want just a mustardish component

Do you ship, Jinmyo, or do I have to come to your place to collect ?

Yummmmm... :raz:

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Freshly made English Mustard is my Fav. I like the way in burns through your sinuses, then no after effects, more like horseradish then chilie. This is closely followed by Maille Dijon with green peppercorns, yum.

Apicius has a recipe for Mustard, dead simple and rather tasty. The is an adaption of it in one of the "Two Fat Ladies" cookbooks.

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Still, I can see a specialist mustard like jalapeno flavoured for something like a hot dog or a pastrami sandwich.

Well, this is really the heart of the issue.

The reason I seperated out use of mustard for "cooking" (and that includes any type of complex preparation) and mustard as a commercially produced condiment was exactly this--use on hot dogs, plain chicken breasts, pastrami, and other foods where the preparation is quicker, or not completely in your own hands.

This sidetracks into another topic, and maybe it should be a seperate thread--use of prepackaged condiments versus use of fresh ingredients and spices.  Mustard is a hard spice to use in any pure form--which is why this is especially an issue with it.

As for the issue of all food tasting the same under a packaged condiment, it doesn't quite compute for me the same way it does for Macrosan and John. :smile:  I favor very spicy or strongly flavored mustards, because for me it serves a similar purpose as chile pepper and other capsicum additives.  It comes down to the SAME argument that I have with people about highly capsicized foods--they seem to assume that it all tastes the same because they can't get past the spice.  Well, the argument doesn't wash with me because I can usually taste both the additive and the underlying ingredient as seperate layers, and the texture of the food as yet another.  The condiment is a shortcut, true (and not always a necessary or wise one), but at least for me it hardly makes everything "taste" the same.

Jon Lurie, aka "jhlurie"

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the argument doesn't wash with me because I can usually taste both the additive and the underlying ingredient as seperate layers. . .
I think that macrosan means (well anyway, *I* mean) that in a pre-flavored mustard the ratio between the mustard and its flavorings remains the same. One might want to alter it, for instance, between two sausages, one mild, one strongly spicy.

John Whiting, London

Whitings Writings

Top Google/MSN hit for Paris Bistros

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My father taught me how to make mustard using Colman's powder when I was around six or seven. Sometimes we used water, other times milk. Anyway, it became a couple of times a week ritual. I've always liked mustard especially with pies and stews, and on sandwiches. I still make Colman's mustard, and I sometimes add a little of the powder to salad dressings.

As for ready made, I like Maille Dijon, Grey Poupon Dijon, and Grey Poupon Country Dijon which is quite grainy, and goes very well with Toad in the Hole (my husband puts some in the actual batter).

An aside really, but is there a significant difference between, say , Maille http://www.maille.com/us/savoir_faire/fab_moutarde.html and Grey Poupon? I didn't realize till inspecting the jar just now that Grey's is made by Nabisco, in New Jersey.

As for flavored mustards, I'm in two minds. Laurent du Clos' Tarragon Dijon is a little unpleasantly sweet. A couple of years ago, I came across a Marks & Spencer's Mustard with Dill, and it was lovely with smoked salmon.

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 I favor very spicy or strongly flavored mustards, because for me it serves a similar purpose as chile pepper and other capsicum additives.  It comes down to the SAME argument that I have with people about highly capsicized foods--they seem to assume that it all tastes the same because they can't get past the spice.

Jon, I certainly agree with you about "highly capsicized foods"... or at least those done skilfully. The heat lifts and highlights other flavours. Even habanero (although on the whole the taste reminds me of a smell I associate with poverty).

Back to mustards.

"I've caught you Richardson, stuffing spit-backs in your vile maw. 'Let tomorrow's omelets go empty,' is that your fucking attitude?" -E. B. Farnum

"Behold, I teach you the ubermunch. The ubermunch is the meaning of the earth. Let your will say: the ubermunch shall be the meaning of the earth!" -Fritzy N.

"It's okay to like celery more than yogurt, but it's not okay to think that batter is yogurt."

Serving fine and fresh gratuitous comments since Oct 5 2001, 09:53 PM

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Pommery...thanks Sandra.  Colman's doesn't do it for me...guess I'm not a purist.  To me it is all heat and no flavor.  I suppose if I were using it for cooking it might be different because, as people have been saying, it would be only one element.  Colman's as a condiment, however, is horrible.

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Yvonne, mustard in batter sounds like a good idea; I can imagine that would work nicely.

Can I just give an irrelevant cheer for Maille's cornichons.  Not only are they decently crunchy, but the Maille jar has a cute little lift-able basket fitted inside which solves once and for all the problem of scooping them out.

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