The culinary mustards
Last updated 6/12/2012 12:56:28 AM. Recipe ID 18686. Report a problem with this recipe.
Title: The culinary mustards
Categories: Info, Sauces, Canadian
Yield: 1 Servings
YELLOW OR WHITE MUSTARD: (Sinapis alba). 'Sinapis' is the Greek name
for mustard and the word from which the German word for mustard,
'senf', is derived. (The species may also be offered as 'Brassica
alba' or 'B. hirta') This is the species whose seed is most commonly
used in American prepared mustards. (The brassy yellow color or many
prepared mustards comes from the addition of turmeric or other food
coloring.) Although some yellow mustard seed is used in English
mustards, it is forbidden in the classic Dijon mustards. The seeds,
which are a warm beige and somewhat larger than those of black and
brown mustards, are sometimes sprouted for use in salads. Plants
usually grow 1 to 2 feet tall.
BLACK MUSTARD: (Brassica nigra). The seeds of black mustard are dark
brown and about 1/16 inch in diameter. The black mustard plant can
grow as tall as 10 feet, but 5 or 6 feet is more usual. This is the
most pungent of the mustards and a prolific seed producer, but its
height and the instability of its pods make it difficult to harvest
with machinery. Thus, it is not widely cultivated commercially and is
available mostly through specialty stores.
BROWN MUSTARD: (B. juncea). Brown mustard seeds are similar in size
and color to those of black mustard, but significantly less pungent.
The plant is only about half as tall as black mustard (about 4 feet)
and much more easily cultivated, and it has largely replaced black
mustard as a cultivated crop. Some 250,000 acres of prairie in
Canada are planted to brown and yellow mustard. Numerous cultivars
of this species have been bred for their lively, nutritious greens,
which are especially highly regarded in Asia, but these are not the
cultivars used for seed production.
* Source: Barbara Bassett in 'The Herb Companion' * (August/September
1993 issue) * Typed for you by Karen Mintzias
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