Some like it hot!..Chillies and mustards

mustards.jpgI have been experimenting with mustard seeds lately with quite a bit of success.I did not realise how many different flavours you could have.Of course you can have black ,yellow or white mustard seeds  in your store cupboard but it’s not that important if you only have one type..

Orange and tarragon mustard


finely grated rind and juice of 2 oranges

250g/8oz yellow mustard seeds

100ml/3fl oz white wine vinegar

2tsp salt

1tbsp fresh tarragon

a little brandy or whisky


  • Put the orange rind and juice in a small pan.Bring to the boil,then reduce the heat and simmer for a few seconds.(this improves the keeping qualities)Remove from the heat and leave to cool completely.

  • Coarsely grind 200g/7oz of the mustard seeds in the spice mill or coffee grinder.Place in a glass bowl with the remaining whole mustard seeds.

  • Add the boiled orange juice and rind and mix well.Leave to stand for 5 minutes then stir in the vinegar,salt and tarragon.

  • Pack the mustard into sterilised jars.Cover each one with waxed paper that has been dipped in whisky or brandy,then seal.

  • The mustard will be ready to eat in a few days(this gives the mustard seeds time to swell and soften)

Honeyed mustard


This mustard is richly flavoured and is wonderful served with meats or cheeses,you can also stir it into sauces and salad dressings to give it an extra ,peppery taste.

Makes about 1 and a qtr lb.

225g/8oz mustard seeds

15ml/1tbs ground cinnamon

2.5ml/half tsp ground ginger

300ml/half pint white wine vinager

90ml/6tbs clear honey.


  • Put the mustard seeds in a bowl with the spices and pour over the vinager.stir well to mix then leave to soak overnight.

  • The next day,put the mustard mixture into a mortar and pound with a pestle,adding the honey very gradually.

  • Continue pounding and mixing until the mustard resembles a thick paste.If the mixture is too stiff add a little extra vinegar until you get the right consistency.

  • Spoon the mixture into four sterilised jars,seal and label,then store in the fridge and use within 4 weeks.

Roasted red peppers and chilli jelly


The hint of chilli in this red jelly makes it ideal for spicing up hot or cold roast meat,sausages or hamburgers.

8 red peppers quartered and seeded

4 fresh red chillies halved and seeded

1 onion roughly chopped

2 cloves garlic

250ml/8fl oz water

250ml/8fl oz white wine vinegar

1tsp salt

450g/1lb granulated sugar

25ml/1 tbs powdered pectin


  • Arrange the peppers ,skin side up on a rack in a grillpan and grill until the skins blister and blacken.

  • Put the peppers in a polythene bag until they are cool enough to handle then remove the skins.

  • Put the skinned peppers,chillies,onion,garlic and water in a food processor or blender and process to a puree.Press the puree through a sieve  over a bowl pressing hard with a ladle or spoon to extract as much juice as you can.There should be about 750ml/3cups

  • Scrape the puree into a large pan and then stir in the white wine vinegar and salt.

  • In a bowl combine the sugar and pectin then stir into the pepper mixture.Heat gently,stirring,until the pectin and sugar has dissolved completely then bring to a rolling boil.

  • Cook the jelly stirring frequently exactly 4 minutes,then remove the pan from the heat.

  • Pour the jelly into warmed sterilised jars.Leave to cool and set,then cover,label and store.

Clove spiced mustard


This spicy mustard is good for robust red meats such as sausages and steaks,particularly when they are cooked on a BBQ

75g/3oz white or yellow mustard seeds

50g/2oz soft brown sugar

5ml/1tsp salt

5ml/1tsp black peppercorns

5ml/1tsp cloves

5ml/1tsp turmeric

200ml/7fl oz malt vinegar


  • Put all the ingredients except the malt vinegar into a food processor or blender and process.Gradually add the vinegar,15ml /1tbs at a time processing well between each addition.Continue processing until the mustard forms a fairly thick ,coarse paste.

  • Leave the mustard to stand for 10 – 15 minutes to thicken slightly.

  • Spoon into jars using a funnel.Cover the surface with a wax disc,then seel with a screwtop lid or a cork and label.


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