In honor of National Mustard Day on August 4th, I thought we should talk about and celebrate one of the popular condiments that is used in most Chinese restaurants: Spicy Mustard.
This popular condiment is typically served with appetizers like egg rolls or wonton strips and can bring a flare of flavor by adding some heat. This is done by mixing dry mustard powder with water, creating a chemical reaction that makes the sharp, hot taste. How does this all work. Here's the science to break it down.
Mustard seeds come from the mustard plant, a member of the cabbage family. They contain two sulphur compounds, myrosin, and sinigrin, as well as an enzyme, myrosinase. When the seeds are broken and water is added, the enzyme breaks down the sulphur compounds. The result is the sharp tasting oil that gives mustard its pungency and helps explain why the name mustard comes from the Latin words mustum (must) and ardens (burning).
Want to try and make it yourself? Here's a simple recipe to spice up any of your dishes at home!