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Mustard Sauce - Liven Up Your Food
By Chris McCarthy

Pep up your taste buds with a dash of mustard. If mustard seeds are not your cup of tea, have mustard sauce instead. Spread it on your grilled meats, dip those crunchy French fries in it or crown your hamburger with a liberal dose of mustard sauce. Have it anyway you like. The tangy, pungent flavored mustard will make a delicacy out of even the plain old bread and butter sandwich.

The mustard sauce is a hot sauce with a mild temperament. While it is spicy enough to add a zing to your food, it does not exactly cause your tongue to go up in flames. So you don't need to be a fire-eater to savor its taste.

Big Bob Gibson's Backyard brand of barbecue mustard sauce happily blends the best of both worlds. The sharpness of the onions, garlic, and hot sauces are tempered to comfort by the molasses, sugar and caramel.

It is actually hard to fathom that the staple fixture that mustard sauces are in today's dinner tables, had a relatively low-key debut in America. Though mustard in its raw form was not much popular, the Americans gradually warmed up to the mild mustard sauces that were prepared with white mustard seeds. Now, "Pass the mustard" is probably the most uttered phrase during any meal.

Once gaining a foothold, the mustard sauces have blossomed with time, innovating while simultaneously adhering to the taste appeals of the average American. Thus, you have Honey Dijon, a delectable combination of honey and mustard, which enjoys cult status among the foodies.

The mustard sauces lend themselves well to innovations and customizations. Thus those who would love to heat up things a bit more can add peppers to their mustard sauces. Ass Kickin Mustard would suit them to a hilt. Containing the fiercely hot Habanero peppers, ground mustard and also whole mustard seeds, mustard sauces of this variety command considerable awe.

The mustard sauce, as a food additive, dipper and accompaniment, can any day give the ketchup a run for its money. Those tiny mustard seeds do pack in quite a punch.


Mustard Fact Sheet

Mustard seeds were used both for flavoring and for medication by the ancient Greeks and Romans. By 800 AD, France was already using the stuff to enhance salted meats and plain meals. Mustard was also one of the many spices brought during Spanish explorations in the 1400s. It was originally considered as a medicinal plant and only later took on a culinary character.

Actually, mustard seeds aren't hot at all. They only get "fired up" when cracked and mixed with cold water. Mustard gets its heat from the oils which are released from the seeds when crushed. The mustard oils contain enzymes and chemicals that when mixed with water, liberates compounds known as isothiocyanates, that give mustard the heat.

Mustard varieties differ mainly in strength of flavor. The relative heat packed by mustard depends on the proportion of brown or black (strong) to yellow (mild) mustard seeds. The flavor of black and brown mustard is more intense and lasts longer than that of the white mustards.

About the Author

Chris McCarthy is the owner of InsaneChicken's Sauce and a hot sauce enthusiast. InsaneChicken sells hot sauces, bbq sauces, bbq rubs and salsa's from around the world.

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