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Pommery Moutarde de Meaux, with its shiny red wax top, sits on my counter. It’s been famous since 1632, when Brillat-Savarin declared it was the finest gourmet mustard. It’s rustic, filled with crushed mustard seeds, and goes particularly well on sandwiches and with roasted meats.

Pommery also makes a gingerbread flavored mustard they call Moutard au Pain d’Epices, but I haven’t tried it yet. I am guessing it could be a revelation on a ham sandwich.

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In my refrigerator, I have a glass jar of French mustard made by Amora. This supermarket brand mustard is my favorite for all kinds of cooking, especially good in a vinaigrette.

 

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Maille Dijon mustard is what I use in sauces. It’s creamy, not too strong, and blends beautifully. Maille has been making this mustard since 1747.

So what are all these mustards made from? Mustard seeds, water, vinegar, and salt. Using different vinegars or types of mustard seeds brings out their unique flavors.

I often make my own mustard. I love all of the above, but when I make my own it pops with flavor and I can tailor what I put into it. I am crazy about lavender honey mustard. I make it when I can get my hands on fresh unsprayed lavender or when I buy culinary lavender. It’s probably one of the best mustards I make. I also like making fresh tarragon mustard when my tarragon comes up in the garden.

Or I make a base mustard, then add honey and chopped candied fruits; or crush in green and pink peppercorns; or whisk in port and serve with roast beef or steak.

Making your own mustard is a breeze. Literally. It couldn’t be easier. You can grind your mustard seeds in a spice grinder or use powdered English mustard powder. You can add a drop or two of olive oil to give it a sheen and smooth texture.

Here’s my base recipe for you to try. It uses English dry mustard powder, which I like because it contains tumeric and I love the taste.

Basic Mustard

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup mustard powder
  • 1/4 cup wine (or beer)
  • 1/4 cup white or sherry vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon
    sea salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar or honey
  • 2 egg yolks

Cooking Directions

  1. Cook all the ingredients, except for the egg yolks,for about 5 minutes, whisking and blending well.
  2. Cool, then beat in the egg yolks to blend until very smooth. Cook over very low heat until thickened, whisking constantly. Use or cool and keep in refrigerator.
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