Guest Post: An Introduction to Homemade Mustard from Kaela Porter of Local Kitchen

I’m off on vacation this week with my husband Scott. While we wander the wilds of Lancaster County, PA, a few of my favorite bloggers will be dropping by to keep you entertained. Up today is Kaela Porter from the blog Local Kitchen. She writes about canning, preserving and eating locally from the Hudson Valley and her blog is one of my favorites. Kaela also happens to be my mustard mentor and so I’m thrilled to post this tutorial today.

Chances are, if you’re here, you can. Maybe you’re a pickle girl, with a love of all things briny; maybe you’re a guy who really kicks out the jams. But I’m here to tell you, if you haven’t tried homemade mustard yet, you are missing out.

Of all the things I make: jams & preserves, chutneys & pickles, salsas and tomatoes galore; mustard is the shining star. The “wow” factor, the double-take, the “you really make mustard?” Friends and family are invariably impressed, even more so when they taste the goods. The paradox is that this most impressive of home-canning treats is by far the easiest one to make.

No slicing or dicing, no blanching or peeling, no running to the store for pectin, no worrying about the set. At its simplest, mustard is simply ground mustard powder + water. That hot mustard you love at the Chinese restaurant near work? Nothing but ‘Oriental’ mustard powder mixed with water: you could make it at home in the blink of an eye.

Homemade Dijon mustard is not much more effort: wine is infused with some onion and garlic for flavor, then whisked with mustard powder and boiled until thick. Pop it in the fridge and in under 30 minutes you’ve got a fancy French mustard, better than most anything you can buy, for only a couple of bucks. No wonder everyone is so impressed by homemade mustard.

Mustard-making at home is comprised of two basic techniques: 1) combining ground mustard powder with liquid for a smooth, thin mustard, that usually has a more subtle flavor (white wine, fresh herbs, and floral infusions are good here); and 2) soaking whole mustard seed in liquid, then puréeing in a food processor for a hearty, grainy mustard (strong flavors shine here, whether it is acidic fruit, a favorite liquor or spicy chiles).

Mustard, both whole seeds and ground, can be expensive at the grocery store, but is quite economical at Penzeys and other spice merchants. And once you have the mustard on hand, the world is your oyster (or pretzel, or sausage, as the case may be). For mustards destined to go straight to the fridge, flavor options are limited only by your imagination: most mustards contain either vinegar or some form of alcohol and as such are acidic enough, even with added herbs or vegetables, for long-term refrigerator storage.

To can mustards for shelf-stable storage, we must, as in all other canning, take into account canning safety: for processing in a boiling water bath, it is best to rely on trusted recipes, or to make substitutions that you are confident will not adversely affect the pH or density (thickness) of the final product.

The canning itself can be a little tricky, simply because the grainier mustards can be thick and viscous, and it is sometimes challenging to keep the mustard boiling hot while filling the last jars. If you’ve ever made a fruit butter, you’ll know what I mean; just make sure to be diligent in bubbling your jars, leave yourself a generous headspace, and do your best to make sure the mustard is piping hot when it goes into your jars in order to prevent siphoning during processing.

Personally? I hate mustard. Loathe it, actually; so the hardest part of mustard making for me is the “adjust to taste” part (because, well, ew). Luckily, my husband, a certified mustardophile, is happy to step into the role of taste tester. And as my mustards have developed quite a following among friends & family, I make a lot of mustard. After the jump, I offer up two basic recipes: a classic Dijon and a sweet & boozy Bourbon Brown Sugar. If you, or someone you love, is a mustard fan, you owe it to yourself to give this a try: you (like me) may never buy mustard again!

Classic Dijon Mustard

Yield: Approximately 1 and 1/2 cups.

Ingredients

  • 1 and ½ cups white wine (ideally a white Burgundy, or a crisp Chablis or sauvignon blanc)*
  • ½ cup white wine vinegar**
  • 1 medium white onion, chopped
  • 2 large cloves garlic, chopped
  • 4 oz dry mustard powder (ground yellow mustard seed, about 1 cup + 2 tsp)
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tsp salt
  • Dash or two of Tabasco or cayenne pepper (optional)

Instructions

  1. Prepare canner, jars & lids.
  2. Combine wine, vinegar, onion and garlic in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow aromatics to steep in the wine for 10 – 15 minutes.
  3. Strain vegetables from the infused wine, pressing on solids to release all the juice. Return wine to the saucepan and add salt, honey and Tabasco, if using. Over medium heat, whisk in the mustard powder; continue whisking and heating until the mustard comes to a boil. Stirring constantly, boil mustard until it reduces to your desired thickness, remembering that it will thicken further upon cooling (I cooked mine for about 10 minutes). Taste and adjust seasonings.
  4. Fill hot jars to a generous 1/4-inch headspace (more like 1/2-inch), tamping down the mustard into the jar. Thoroughly bubble by passing the handle of a wooden spoon along the edges and middle of the jar. Wipe rims, affix lids and process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Allow to rest for 5 minutes in the hot water prior to removing from the canner.

Notes

*I read somewhere that most traditional Dijon mustard is made with both red & white wines. Feel free to experiment with half red:half white wine, or maybe red wine vinegar with white wine.

** If storing in the fridge, you may omit the vinegar and simply use 2 cups of wine.

Adapted from Homemade Dijon Mustard at Devoid of Culture and Indifferent to the Arts and Oktoberfest Beer Mustard in The Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving, J. Kingry and L. Devine, eds.

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Bourbon Brown Sugar Mustard

Yield: Aproximately 3 Cups

Ingredients

  • 1 cup bourbon*
  • 1/2 cup filtered water
  • 1 cup brown mustard seeds
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 6 tbsp dry mustard powder (ground yellow mustard seed)
  • 1/2 cup lightly packed brown sugar**
  • 1 tsp salt

Instructions

  1. Combine bourbon, water and mustard seed in a small bowl. Mix to wet all seeds, and then allow to steep until nearly all of the liquid is absorbed, about 4 hours, or overnight. Alternatively, heat bourbon, water and seeds until mixture just comes to a boil; remove from heat and steep for about 2 hours.
  2. Prepare canner, jars & lids.
  3. Transfer soaked seeds to the bowl of a food processor; process until smooth, or leave grainy, as you prefer (my mini Cuisinart will not get the mustard entirely smooth). Add vinegar, mustard powder, sugar, and salt and process briefly to mix. Transfer to a medium saucepan.
  4. Over medium heat, stirring constantly, bring mustard to a boil; continue to boil mustard until it reduces to your desired thickness, remembering that it will thicken further upon cooling (I cooked mine for about 3 minutes). Taste and adjust seasonings (add additional water if you need to tinker with the flavor and the mustard is getting too thick).
  5. Fill hot jars to a generous 1/4-inch headspace (more like 1/2-inch), tamping down the mustard into the jar. Thoroughly bubble by passing the handle of a wooden spoon along the edges and middle of the jar. Wipe rims, affix lids and process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Allow to rest for 5 minutes in the hot water prior to removing from the canner.
  6. Uncanned mustard should last at least a month, if not longer, in the fridge. Canned, store in a cool, dark spot for up to one year.

Notes

* According to Tai this is very bourbon-y; in a good way, but the flavor comes shining through. Use a liquor you like, and consider substituting 1/2 cup of water for 1/2 cup of bourbon if you would like a milder bourbon flavor.

**Honey, or maple syrup, both seem like a nice substitutes for the brown sugar, for a change of pace (or a local sweetener); I would start with 1/4 cup and work up from there.

Adapted from Oktoberfest Beer Mustard in The Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving, J. Kingry and L. Devine, Eds.

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71 Responses to Guest Post: An Introduction to Homemade Mustard from Kaela Porter of Local Kitchen

  1. 51

    [...] Homemade Mascarpone that I can’t help but drool over, and I have brought some sweet and zesty Bourbon Brown Sugar Mustard, I would write on your sheet that I would like to trade a jar of my mustard for a container of your [...]

  2. 52
    Ann Folz says:

    I have a recipe I use for a spicy mustard soaking the whole seeds in beer and vinegar for a day or two then put in food processor. Wondering if I have to cook this recipe before I can with a hot water bath?

  3. 53

    [...] the Dijon and Bourbon Mustards I used recipes I found on Food in Jars.  We made two versions of the Bourbon, one with a full cup of bourbon, and one version with 1/2 [...]

  4. 54
    Nancy Hermann says:

    Why does the m&m commercial take over the first page of your dijon mustard recipe?I cannot remove it and if I reboot, there it is again . I don’t mind a commercial but this mm is so disgusting, I will never ever buy them again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • 54.1
      Marisa says:

      Nancy, the ad only takes over if you hover over it. The one that appears on the bottom can be gotten rid of if you click the ‘x’ in the corner. So sorry that you’re frustrated by them!

  5. 55
    Ruth says:

    Hmmm, I don’t do mustard, but Hubby likes spicy brown mustard. How would I modify the Dijon recipe to approximate that? He says Dijon’s usually sweeter…..

  6. 56
  7. 57
    Rick Garza says:

    I have a mustard recipe that uses eggs. Can that be canned? I want to store on shelf, then refrigerate after opening.

  8. 58
    Wade says:

    If I were to add dried tarragon to this recipe would that give it an off flavor when combined with the onion and the garlic?

  9. 59

    […] Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It and Shanelle suggested pretzels.  There’s a recipe for homemade pretzel bites here.  If that sounds ambitous,  you could easily make Kaela’s homemade mustard that she shared on Food in Jars. […]

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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    [...] yet taken the mustard plunge, this post has everything you need to get started – surf on over and check it [...]

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    [...] It’s completely illogical, because we don’t use THAT much mustard, but I’d like to try making my own. [...]

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    [...] Homemade mustard [...]

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    [...] Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It and Shanelle suggested pretzels.  There’s a recipe for homemade pretzel bites here.  If that sounds ambitous,  you could easily make Kaela’s homemade mustard that she shared on Food in Jars. [...]

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    [...] Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It and Shanelle suggested pretzels.  There’s a recipe for homemade pretzel bites here.  If that sounds ambitous,  you could easily make Kaela’s homemade mustard that she shared on Food in Jars. [...]

  9. All I Want For Christmas « Not My Mother's Kitchen - December 3, 2012

    [...] Homemade Mustard - add a little savory to the sweet treats with a Dijon Mustard and Bourbon Brown Sugar Mustard recipe from Food in Jars.   [...]

  10. Save the Date: January 15th, 2013 « Countryside Conservancy - December 16, 2012

    [...] Homemade Mascarpone that I can’t help but drool over, and I have brought some sweet and zesty Bourbon Brown Sugar Mustard, I would write on your sheet that I would like to trade a jar of my mustard for a container of your [...]

  11. Motown Mustard Extravaganza! « From Scratch - February 3, 2013

    [...] the Dijon and Bourbon Mustards I used recipes I found on Food in Jars.  We made two versions of the Bourbon, one with a full cup of bourbon, and one version with 1/2 [...]

  12. Bourbon and Brown Sugar Mustard | Will Bake For Tattoos - March 20, 2013

    [...] recipe adapted from Food in Jars [...]

  13. Toronto Food Event January 30: Home Ec #1: B.Y.O.B.S - WellPreserved.ca - January 2, 2014

    […] Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It and Shanelle suggested pretzels.  There’s a recipe for homemade pretzel bites here.  If that sounds ambitous,  you could easily make Kaela’s homemade mustard that she shared on Food in Jars. […]

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