Monday, February 3, 2014

Mustard Making

Two years ago Ed and I travelled to Germany to visit our son Jack who was teaching there for the year. After visiting him in the small town of Hagan, we headed down to the Alsace region of France, then crossed the Rhine and followed the Moselle River Valley northward.

One of the things we did on that trip was tour the Historische Senfmuehle (translate: Historic Mustard Mill) in Cochem, a quaint German town on the Moselle River. At the mill, we tasted a number of mustards and then bought as many jars as I could convince Ed that we could carry back in our luggage for friends back home. (I recall he was not all that happy about it.) I remember thinking that making mustard wouldn't be all that hard, if you could get the right ingredients. But that thought flew right out of my head as we moved on down the river.

Fast forward two-and-a-half years...For my birthday last month, Maggie gave me a mustard making kit. Thank you Maggie.

And this snowy day seemed ideal for making mustard. I unpacked the kit and then assembled the two missing ingredients: white wine vinegar and white wine.

I combined a bit of water, a couple of tablespoons of wine, the mustard flour and the mustard seed. I let that combination stand for 10 minutes before drizzling in the vinegar and adding the sugar and spices. I'm supposed to refrigerate the finished product for at least a week to allow the flavors to develop. Well, that was easy.

So easy that I then looked up some more recipes for mustard and discovered that none of them were very complicated and I could learn to make sweet mustard, hot mustard, whole-grain mustard, et cetera, et cetera.

So stay tuned. I can see that I could easily get carried away. Your next birthday or holiday gift may well be a crock of Farm Dover mustard and a fat link of salami!

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