Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Hard Cider Whole-Grain Mustard

There are so many quotes about quitting or non-quitting that they've all become overwrought and cliched, however, I begrudingly admit there is something to be said about not quitting.  Today I went back to a project that had eluded me on two prior attempts, guess you could say I'm a glutton for punishment, and made a third try at home-made mustard.  

My first mustard was a few years back and it was terrible, like, try just a little snakey-lick and make a disgusting face kinda gross.  It included Guiness and whole mustard seeds and got tossed in the bin post-haste.  Even the Guiness couldn't save it and I was sad to see the beer get tossed.  My second attempt was definitely good in the flavor department but the texture sucked.  I had used a recipe from a certain personality on a food-centric television channel that is well regarded for their science-based cooking show and added some hallertau hops for bitterness but the texture just didn't come together.  In fact, the stuff just wouldn't thicken so I used a roux to thicken it....blech! 

Having recently joined the local homebrew club, QUAFF (Quality Ale and Fermentation Fraternity), and in anticipation of some up-coming events I wanted to try my hand at mustard again.  I did a quick search of the ol' wide web of the world and found a trusted source with what looked to be a solid recipe.  Below is my interpretation of whole-grain recipe from Hank over at hunter angler gardener cook

Hard Cider Whole-Grain Mustard

Makes about 1 cup.

Prep Time: 12 hours
6 tablespoons brown mustard seeds
1/2 cup mustard powder (I used Coleman's)
3 tablespoons apple-cider vinegar
1/2 cup hard apple cider (homemade by my buddy Mike S.)
2 teaspoons salt 
1 tablespoon honey 

I took about 2/3 of the mustard seeds and ground them up chunky-like in my mortar and pestle because I feel I have more control over the final grind and can stop when I get to the right grind size.  Then I just mixed everything together well with a whisk and tossed it in the fridge to get all happy-like overnight.  

Here is the finished product dabbed on some eye-talian sausage, which I'm happy to say is a success.  (Not the best pairing but I can deal with it)  This stuff is no sissy mustard, it's some seriously high-test clear your nasal passages kinda pungent but in a good way.  

I'm going to try another batch in the near future with some hops again but I'm thinking success is nearly guaranteed in which case I'll be improving upon success rather than un-quitting, or not quitting, whatever... I'll also leave more whole mustard seeds and increasing the honey by about 50% give or take. 


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