Mustards seeds, also known as "chives," are actually the small round seed-like seeds of amustard plant. The seeds themselves are normally about 1 to 2 centimeters in diameter and can be color from pale yellow to dark purple. They are most often used for their flavorful seeds. In most cases, the mustard seeds themselves are not used but instead, the rind, which has a very distinct flavor, is used. It is also sometimes possible to find small black or red peppers along with the seeds in the seeds. The seed coat is edible and can be harvested to produce vinegar.
Mustards seeds have been a part of our culinary tradition since at least ancient Greece. Before the development of canola oil, mustard seeds were often used as a natural replacement for olive oil in many kinds of recipes. For example, when fat was needed for frying foods, mustard seeds were used as a substitute. It was even believed that they had medicinal uses in some cultures. For example, in Greece, the herb was said to treat snakebites.
The flavour of mustards seeds is quite unique and very much different from other types of seeds used in making Mustards. It is considered to be a tangy and spicy kind of taste, reminiscent of curry. This is why it can be substituted for such things as rice vinegar and even vinegar from other fruits. They are best eaten raw, though many will enjoy them when cooked.
A mustards seeds recipe usually makes use of oil and vinegar in some way. For instance, some cooks say that adding a tablespoon of vinegar to a half cup of olive oil makes a nice accompaniment to salads. If you like something a little more spicy, try incorporating a teaspoon or two of mustard seed extract and a few drops of oil into your salad dressing.
You'll find that there are several different kinds of Mustards seeds contain different amounts of fatty and protein content. Many recipes will call for more olive oil and less vinegar than others, for example. If you are uncertain which type of vinegar is best to use, try a combination of both - a little of each can be perfect for a number of different dishes. Consider serving these dishes with vegetarian dishes such as vegetable tagliatelle or rice pilaf to add a little extra spice.
The reason Mustards seeds contain glucosinolates is because they contain a chemical known as choline. Choline is a substance that is often derived from being part of a natural bioflavonoid, a substance produced by plants, and it helps make cell membranes more sticky and hydrophobic, which is helpful in preventing water from penetrating cells. Glucosinolates of Mustards seeds do not have very high levels of choline themselves, so using them in foods is not a good idea, since the extra amount of glucosinolates in the oil would counteract the effect. Instead, focus your cooking on other ingredients, and look to substitutes if needed.
There are many ways to prepare Mustards seeds and they are often used in their own juices, or in salads. Diced, chopped, or powdered, you can add them to soups, sauces, and stews, or mix them in with your favorite vinaigrette. You can find dozens of recipes using Mustards seeds and the delicious taste of this seed is hard to resist. As an added health benefit, Mustards seeds also provide protein to your diet, helping you feel full and satisfied. They are also a source of essential fatty acids, Vitamin E, and other minerals.
As with most seeds, the best way to eat Mustards is to soak them before consumption. The bitterness of the black seeds is reduced when they are soaked, but the flavor remains. If you're not sure that you can tolerate the taste, seed mixes can be purchased that will eliminate all of the piquancy and offer a more natural flavor. In addition to using the flavorful juice, Mustards seeds can also be smoked, dried, or grated to create a delicious snack. It is possible to make a really tasty jerky out of Mustards seeds, and some recipes call for mustard seeds to be blended into glazed dough or rolled out to form a pancake. Whatever way you choose to eat your Mustards, the health benefits are significant and the taste is versatile.