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Mustard info Tips and Information

Mustard info and tips will help you in your cooking and food preparation.These are very useful and quite interesting information that you learn once and then apply at any time you need it.


mustard info

Brassica nigra/Brassica juncea
Sinapsis alba/Brassica hirta
rai

Mustard is widely used in the preparation of auspicious fare in indian homes and temples. It is believed to possess the ability to calm the mind create a peaceful personality and sharpen
intelligence

How it grows
There are 3 main vaneties of mustard: white brown and black. All 3 varieties grow in India as well as in Argentina Austria Chile Denmark Great Britain Japan and the USA. They are all annuals which bear clusters of bright yellow flowers. In fact from a distance mustard fields in bloom look like huge velvety golden carpets.

Appearance and taste
The seeds of the plant are the spice. White mustard seeds are a pale tan in colour and have a smooth matte finish. Black mustard seeds are larger than the other 2. The seeds of all 3 varieties are tiny and notoriously energetic. If you ever drop a packet of mustard seeds on the floor you will find the odd seed even after weeks of cleaning. Raw mustard seeds have almost no smell but on cooking they acquire a distinctive baked earth aroma that dominates any dish. The seeds are sharp nutty slightly bitter and aromatic in taste. Their heat is often misjudged so be careful when adding them to recipes. Mustard paste has a unique flavour that hits you in the nose and then sings in your veins!

Buying and storing
Mustard is available as whole seeds split seeds or mustard dal powder and paste. indian cooking does not use commercially blended mustards but they can make a reasonable substitute for homemade mustard paste. Mustard oil is a popular cooking medium in regional indian cooking. Buy small amounts of the seeds and store in a clean dry jar. Mustard seeds form clumps when wet which makes them difficult to use when cooking. Stored properly they last up to a year

Medicinal and other uses
Warm mustard oil is an exceiient liniment and is used to relieve arthritic pain. In north India mustard oil massaged into the scalp is thought to promote lustrous and bountiful hair growth. Mustard is also believed to ward off evil and indian women rituaily cancel any negative forces that surround their children by wishing over them with a handful of mustard seeds.

Culinary uses
In the south of India and along the coast mustard is used primadly in the tempering or baghar of spices. This simple procedure of heating oil until very hot dropping in the mustard seeds and cooking them until they pop and crackle gives many dishes a distinctive flavour. In Bengal mustard seeds are crushed to a paste for use in fiery marinades and curries that can shock the senses. Mustard is an excellent preservative and split seeds which look like tiny lentils are widely used for Pickling
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