Mustard is one of the world’s oldest condiments. In the late 4th to early 5th century, the Romans were combining a mixture of ground mustard, pepper, caraway, lovage, grilled coriander seeds, dill, celery, thyme, oregano, onion, honey, vinegar, fish sauce, and oil, to be used as a glaze for wild boar. The Romans then took mustard seeds to Gaul, it was planted alongside grapes in vineyards. French monasteries helped to popularise the condiment and sold it during the 9th century. Maurice Grey and Antoine Poupon introduced the world to Grey Poupon Dijon mustard during the 1770s. Jeremiah Colman (founder of Colman’s Mustard) was appointed mustard maker to Queen Victoria in 1886.
Although it is the seeds which are used to make mustard the leaves of the plant are also edible. The mustard plant is a member of the brassica family like broccoli and cauliflower. Many Asian leaves such as mizuna and tatsoi are technically mustards.
There are many types of mustards these include:
English Mustard: One of the most familiar sites in kitchens and on dining tables throughout the U.K, this variety is made using wheat flour and turmeric. It has a hot peppery taste and the distinct yellow colour comes from the turmeric.
Dijon Mustard: Is smooth and made from brown seeds, it is made using verjuice instead of vinegar. The acidity from the verjuice gives Dijon an intensified heat and a more pungent flavour.
Wholegrain Mustard: It’s thick, coarse texture is made by grinding the seeds to form a paste, but not so fine that all the seeds are broken down.
There are many other varieties each with a distinct flavour profile, for a range of locally produced artisan mustards please see our Plough to Plate brochure, where you will find varieties flavoured with truffles, Cornish ale, pink peppercorns, horseradish and black peppercorns.
Mustard facts …world records…
In India and Denmark, it is believed that evil spirits can be kept at bay by spreading mustard seeds around the outside of the home.
It was known for medicinal properties before being its culinary uses were popularised. The Greeks would use a paste to relieve muscular pain and toothache.
Mustard was known for its medicinal purposes before its culinary uses. It was first mentioned as a curative in the Greek’s Hippocratic writings. In the form of mustard paste it was used for general muscular relief and to help “cure” toothaches. It also became known to stimulate appetite and digestion, help clear sinuses, and increase blood circulation. Mustard flour can even be sprinkled in your socks to help prevent frostbite.
A teaspoon serving has less than 20 calories, contains no sugar or fat and it relatively low in salt. Making it one of the healthier meal accompaniment than mayonnaise (as it is much lower in fat) and ketchup (less sugar).
The majority of the woulds mustard seed is produced in Canada, which provides 50% of the globally consumed seed.
Mustard consumption world wide.
700 million pounds of mustard are eaten every year. With Americans being the largest consumers, totaling approximately 40 million pounds a year or 12 oz per person. The first Saturday of August marks the celebration of National mustard day at The Mount Horeb Mustard Museum in Wisconsin. the museum is home to a collection of more than five thousand jars of mustard from over 60 countries. The American’s love of the condiment and it’s association with hot dogs and baseball means that annually more than 1,600 gallons and 2,000,000 packets are consumed every year at the New York Yankee stadium.