Thursday, February 10, 2011

Mustard + Beer = Spicy Beer Mustard = YUM

My mustard obsession, I will confess, began with a yellow barrel shaped bottle. I squeezed a bit on a brat with some sauteed onions and all at once, my condiment-schmeared face broke into a grin.  I'd caught it.

The mustard bug.
It bit me hard.

Eventually, I graduated to Dijon. A hint spicier, but sweet and seductive. This stuff was just as sophisticated as the commercials made it out to be. From there, no mustard was left behind. The more unusual flavor the better.

Why this obsession with mustard? Dunno. But I'm not the only one. After all, there is a National Mustard Day (August 6, 2011) so there have got to be other mustard-obsessors out there. I'm pretty sure there was never a mustard shortage in my house when I was growing up. Thinking about it, my dad probably was the one that got me hooked. Next to me, he's probably the second most mustard-obsessed person I know.  Who knows, maybe it's genetic!?

But, I digress.  A while back, our good friend Rebecca at Cakewalk made some Spicy Guinness Mustard. She was characteristically generous and shared a jar with us at one of last year's soup nights.  It was so delicious that we got hooked on the idea of making some mustard of our own and experimenting with the flavors a little bit.  More specifically, we wondered what would happen if we kicked up the spice quotient a notch by using one of the wonderful local pumpkin brews in place of the Guinness.
Now, history tells us that, even way back when, wealthy Romans would make mustard at home by grinding up the seeds and mixing it with wine. So, mixing it with beer really isn't such a stretch. And really, living in Milwaukee, it seems only fitting to use what's local. Right?

The beer we used for this particular batch was Tyranena's Painted Ladies Pumpkin Spice Ale. This is their fall seasonal brew and one of our favorite pumpkin brews.  The mellow pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg and other spices balances out the sharpness of the crushed mustard.  We also used unfiltered raw apple-cider vinegar, which gave the mustard a unique fruity flavor that really paired well with the pumpkin.
Now for a little lesson in nutrition.  Not only is it tasty, but the mustard plant also has some significant health benefits. The seeds contain nutrients called isothiocyanates (We have the interwebs at our house, so don't look so amazed). These isothio things have been shown to prevent the growth of cancer cells, specifically to stomach and colon cancer. The seed also contains selenium which is good for reducing the intensity of asthma and rheumatoid arthritis. And if you have high blood pressure or frequent migraines, the seeds have magnesium which may reduce both of these things. Typically mustard is fat free and has very few calories.

So go ahead, double dip!

Of course, before I finish up this post, I also need to mention that the National Mustard Museum is right here in Wisconsin and all of an hour and half away from Milwaukee. We need to make another trek over there because they recently relocated to a bigger facility in Middleton. They have over 5200 different types of mustard on display. Road Trip!

Spicy Pumpkin Mustard

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  1. oh that is so good! i too have been thinking of mustard, not the yellow kind but a grainy, chunky kind. I've been wanting to dip a Pretzilla pretzel roll/bun into some good old mustard, Dusseldorf or English style, for some time. or a mustard coating on a pork roast, hmmmm....

    wow, you hit me right there with this post. im on it.

  2. I'm with PD. This would be a great dip for soft pretzels. My brother would probably love the beer you used too.

  3. Thanks for this! I've been dying to make my own version of the grainy mustard they have at Cafe' Hollander - this is a great start for me.

  4. I'm not gonna lie. I'm not REALLY a mustard person. But you've convinced me to try this. I has beer in it. And I'm a med student. Need I say more?

  5. Oh wow this mustard is awesome and so fitting for you all living in Milwaukee. Beer, pretzels with mustard... Heck, thinking about it my dad is a mustard fan too. I can remember lots of different mustards in the fridge back in the day, could it be the era?

  6. I have the mustard bug too. Especially Dijon, which I lick off the spoon after using it for marinades and such. Can't get enough.

    I've been wanting to make my own mustard for months and just haven't got to it yet. The consistency of this one looks marvelous.

  7. And you can sample every one (at the museum)!
    This is great, I never really thought about making my own mustard.

  8. Now why have I not thought of making my own mustard? This is a great idea...especially since I use the grain Dijon variety quite a lot.

    You certainly gave me something to think about ;o)

    This was a nice visit...thank you.

    Flavourful wishes,

  9. Great post!! It's been awhile since I've made mustard and you've inspired me to make another batch! Thanks!


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