Ah mustard, the condiment that speaks hot summer days, barbecued hotdogs and burgers, plus yellow stains on kids’ t-shirts. But mustard’s much much more. It’s surpassed its traditional ho hum use of “that yellow stuff we add to sandwiches, potato salad, etc.”. And some would say, when it comes to mustard, “move over ketchup, you’re not number one anymore”.
Charles Passy from Market Watch in The Wall Street Journal refers to mustard as “the yellow commodity hotter than gold”, and quotes New York’s restaurateur Alice Price Becker that “it’s the condiment of the moment … the new butter, the new mayo”.
Personally, I think of mustard as I would a good wine or chunk of cheese. There is always one more mustard I need to buy or one more recipe to try. My husband and I considered ourselves mustard connoisseurs and after moving to Saskatchewan our indulgence grew into mustard collections. My daughter would often complain that we had more bottles of mustard in the cupboard than food in the refrigerator.
Fact: Saskatchewan exports over 70% of the world’s mustard.
Mustard’s more than a condiment. Used as a spice, it enhances the flavor of sauces, dressings, dips, rubs, and I’ve heard, ice cream. This month as part of the Canadian Food Experience Project, Canadian food bloggers were asked to showcase regional food. I’ve included my version of a mustard rub made from local Saskatchewan mustard seed, and part of the fun in its preparation was grinding the seed myself.
Yellow mustard seed, mixed peppercorns, red pepper flakes, and Himalayan sea salt
Mustard mixture with Hungarian paprika, Chipotle Chile, Turmeric, and dried oregano from my herb garden.
1/2 cup of yellow mustard seed
1 tsp mixed peppercorns
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp Himalayan salt
Grind together using a motor and pestle. Add:
1 tbsp Chipotle Chile
2 tsp Hungarian paprika
1 tsp tumeric
1 1/2 dried oregano
plus a few secrets
Store rub in sealed jar. When ready to use, use 2 parts mixture to 1 part raw cane sugar. Season ribs with salt and rub mixture on both sides of ribs or any other meat.
Fresh ground mustard seed with seasonings
Wild Boar Back Ribs from Saskatchewan (about 1 1/2 pounds)
Ribs were rubbed with fresh ground mustard seasonings, wrapped in plastic, and placed in refrigerator for 16 hours.
1 bottle (500ml) Maisel’s Weisse Dunkel (dark beer)
1 cup beef stock
4 large cloves garlic minced
3 Roma tomatoes chopped with seeds removed
7 small onions sliced in half
2 apples peeled and sliced
1 firmly pressed cup of Demerara sugar
1 tbsp mustard powder
1 tbsp of mustard rub mixture
1/2 tsp fresh ground salt
Mix ingredients together and pour over ribs in a braising dish. Bake at 325 for 1 hour, then reduce heat and bake at 275 for 3 hours. Serves 2.
Leftover sauce can be blended and frozen.
Tasty and with just the right amount of heat, I wanted to eat every rib. Darker in color and richer in flavor than pork, wild boar is a healthy source of protein as it’s lower in cholesterol, saturated and unsaturated fats. So give wild boar a try and don’t hold back on the mustard.
Wild boar meat purchased from Golden Prairie Wild Boar Meats, tomatoes from Grandora Gardens, and onions from Wally’s Urban Market Garden at the Saskatoon Farmers’ Market; and mustard seed from SaskMade Marketplace.
For more information on mustard and mustard recipes visit the Saskatchewan Mustard Development Commission: http://www.saskmustard.ca/consumer/mustard/index.html
Dedicated to Jay, a lover of fall-off-the-bone ribs and mustard connoisseur