Sunday, August 26, 2012

Homemade Grainy Mustard

I've been very frustrated reading instructions for making mustard on the internet.  Some call for cooking it, others say never heat mustard.  Some say it gets stronger with sitting, others that it mellows.  I'm currently guessing that it gets stronger when you grind it until you add vinegar, then mellows, at least so long as it is at room temperature.  So here is my first try, rather randomly put together from various recipies I read.  My goal was a mustard with a lot of mustard flavor but not a lot of hotness.  I didn't measure anything, so amounts are approximate.
1 cup yellow mustard seeds
1/4 cup brown mustard seeds
pure cold water to cover by an inch
1 tblsp sea salt
1/4 cup cider vinegar
2 tblsp whey from yogurt or kefir

2 teasp tumeric
2 teasp mustard powder
2 tbsp cider vinegar
1 tbsp honey
ground pepper

Soak the mustard seeds in water 12-24 hours.  If there is significant water not absorbed, strain out seeds and reserve the water.  A funky smell is ok.  Put all ingredients in a blender and puree to the texture you like.   You may need to add more water to get the blender to work, but the mustard will thicken after it is made.  Pour in jars and leave at room temperature for several days to mellow before refrigerating.  This nearly filled two pint jars.

  • I bought my mustard seeds from Penzeys.
  • My food processor would not grind the seeds even after almost 24 hours of soaking--they just whirled around.
  • I filled one jar with the plain mixture and then blended in added half the amount given of extras to make a second jar.
  • A purist would say either use vinegar or whey, not both.  But I added whey from kefir because that seemed to me extra insurance that my mustard wouldn't go bad--I gave good bacteria a head start.
  • I added vinegar at the beginning of grinding the seeds because I didn't want a hot mustard.  For a hotter mustard, grind the seeds with water and let sit 10 minutes to an hour before adding whey (or vinegar, but vinegar will reduce the hotness more).  The whey will start a process of lactofermentation that will build up an effect similar to vinegar over several days.  (Traditional pickles are fermented, not made with vinegar).
  • One of the frustrating things about making mustard is that you can't really taste for seasonings--it isn't going to taste good until it has sat for at least a couple of hours.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Simple sweet potato souffle

I invented this just to use up some leftover egg whites, but it was such a success I want to record the recipe for future use.  I didn't take a photo and six of us ate it all.  It isn't a true souffle that poufs, but it has a pleasant light texture and no added sugar.

2 medium sweet potatoes, cooked and peeled
2 tblsp butter
1/4 cup heavy cream
5 egg whites
pinch of cream of tartar
1/4 cup chopped pecans

Oil a souffle dish or 8x8 pan and preheat oven to 400.  Process cooked sweet potatoes, butter and cream in a food processor until very smooth (a stick blender would probably also work).  Add salt to taste.  Beat egg whites with cream of tartar until stiff.  Mix a third of beaten egg whites into the sweet potato mixture, then fold the sweet potatoes gently into the egg whites until completely combined.  Pour into pan, smooth the top, and sprinkle with pecans.  Bake at 400 for 20-40 minutes, depending on thickness.