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Prepared Mustard (c)2012

I’ve got creative ideas for cooking with prepared mustard during late winter/early spring:

1.  Pork with Mustard Sauce

The recipe for Pork Cutlets with Mustard Sauce from Williams-Sonoma Weeknight Food Fast, is my husband’s favorite supper, and part of our regular recipe rotation. I’ve made it at least a hundred times, with whatever cut of pork that’s on sale: boneless cutlet, or bone-in chop. The meat is browned in butter, then removed from the pan while the sauce is made. Shallots, white wine, chicken broth, heavy cream, and Dijon mustard come together for a creamy sauce with piquant heat. It’s unbelievably good over mashed potatoes and my husband’s favorite vegetable: petit peas.

2.  Celery Root Rémoulade

Celery root is still in season at the moment, and if you haven’t taken advantage of that, here is your chance. In The Country Cooking of France, Ann Willan calls Celery Root Rémoulade “one of the most famous French Salads.” The ugly, gnarly celery root is peeled with a sharp knife and julienned (cut into thin slices), either by hand or using the grating blade of a food processor. Sauce Rémoulade is a mayonnaise made by emulsifying egg yolks, lemon juice, olive oil, and Dijon mustard. You can also just stir the mustard into your favorite prepared mayonnaise. Allow the celery root to marinate in this dressing for 8 hours, which will benefit both the flavor and texture of this hard vegetable. Find a similar recipe by Ina Gartin here.

3.  Roast Chicken with Mustard

Though it was published in 1983, The Taste of France is just as relevant and inspiring today. This collection of writings (Ann Willan, Jill Norman, Richard Olney, others) and recipes paired with Robert Freson’s rich photography is a tour through the country homes of France- the people, the food, and the landscape. Tucked into the Burgundy Chapter amongst escargot and coq au vin I found this little gem, a simple recipe for Chicken with Mustard. Instead of your usual roast chicken, try rubbing a thick layer of Dijon mustard all over the bird, then roasting it in the oven until golden, about 40 minutes at 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Heat 1/2 cup crème fraîche in a small saucepan and pour it over the chicken for the last 10 minutes of roasting. To serve, carve the chicken, and whisk a tablespoon of butter into the pan drippings for a sauce. It’s a nice change from the regular roast chicken routine.

4.  Mussels with Saffron and Mustard

I found the recipe for Mussels with Saffron and Mustard in Thomas Keller’s Bouchon cookbook. He refers to mustard and saffron as traditional pairings for shellfish. To cook the dish, he sautés shallots, garlic, and fresh thyme leaves in butter, then adds Dijon mustard, saffron, and white wine, bringing the broth to a simmer. Keller recommends small mussels, as they are sweeter in flavor, for this dish. They need only cook a couple of minutes in the aromatic broth before they’re ready. Serve with bread for sopping up the delicious juices.

5.  Mustard Vinaigrette

Alice Waters shares a recipe for Baby Leek Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette in Chez Panisse Vegetables. The sweet, delicate flavor of leeks made tender by blanching in boiling water is beautifully complimented by a creamy mustard vinaigrette. The leeks are halved vertically and the accompanying sauce is an emulsion of shallots, Dijon mustard, red wine vinegar, and olive oil. Garnish this simple dish with chopped parsley, a crumbled hard boiled egg, and thin slices of prosciutto, or maybe instead go with a feta or fresh goat cheese. A mustard vinaigrette would also be delicious over grilled bitter winter greens like the ones I made a couple of weeks ago at la Domestique. Or serve the dressing tossed in a beet salad.

6.  Hot Smoked Trout Pâté

For some reason, I’m really feeling the Smoked Trout Pâté from River Cottage Every Day at the moment. It’s a nice change from smoked salmon, a spread flavored with crème fraîche, mustard, lemon juice, fresh herbs, and paprika. Hugh uses hot smoked trout for a more robust flavor and texture. If tuna sandwiches for lunch are getting boring, try smoked trout pâté as Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall suggests- spread over rye bread. Or make it a rustic appetizer on crostini with a nice cold beer in a sunny winter day. It keeps for about a week in the fridge stored in a jar with a layer of clarified butter to seal the top from air.

7.  Spicy Guinness Mustard

St. Patrick’s Day is Saturday, and so I have to include this recipe for Spicy Guinness Mustard from Saveur. Brown mustard seeds are combined with stout for a malty, sweet condiment. Cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and allspice also go into the mustard. It’s unique and fun and would be delicious with Irish brown bread and cheddar, and maybe a few fresh oysters to make it special…and a Guinness, of course. Puree the ingredients in a food processor and keep in a jar (refrigerated) for about 6 months.

8.  Fancy Deviled Eggs

I include deviled eggs only because of the recipe for Stuffed Spring Eggs from Canal House Volume 6: The Grocery Store. Eggs are hard-boiled, the yolks removed and combined with mayonnaise, sour cream, and Dijon mustard, then stuffed back in the egg whites. Steamed asparagus tips, chives, and chervil are the final garnish. Serve these deviled eggs with a crisp white wine on a sunny Saturday afternoon, or maybe for Sunday brunch with mimosa?

9.  Mustard on the Charcuterie Plate

For my favorite, rustic lunch I like to place slices of cured sausages on a small cutting board with crusty baguette, cheddar, cornichons, hard-boiled eggs and plenty of grainy mustard for dipping. It’s simple but feels like a treat, especially with a glass of wine. If you’re serving this for hors d’oeuvres, offer several unique types of mustard for guests to try. I like violet-hued casis mustard or an herb infused tarragon. It’s a great excuse to try new prepared mustards.

10.  Roast Salmon with Whole Grain Mustard Crust

I tried this recipe for Roast Salmon with Whole Grain Mustard Crust from Ken Norris over at Food & Wine Magazine, and it’s unbelievably good. The mustard protects the delicate salmon from the drying heat of the oven. The fish’s flesh is so tender, and surprisingly, the kick of hot mustard mellows in the oven, making for a mild and sweet coating.

What is your favorite way to cook with prepared mustard? Share it in the comments section. Click Here.