My new favorite condiment: Mustard From Hell
Mary Bilyeu, Contributor
Connie pronounced the name in Polish for me, since that's one language I've never studied. (Once fluent in French, two years of Latin, a year each of Russian and Italian, and I can read Hebrew -- with the vowels -- though I don't actually know what I'm saying.) And then she told me that it's a very hot mustard but an exceptional product, and that its name translates to "Mustard From Hell." Well, Jeremy's not a big fan of spicy food, but Tom and I both like things with a bit of heat, so I took Connie up on her recommendation.
And boy, was that one of the best things I've done in my culinary history! Jeremy immedately came home from the deli and bravely put a bit of the mustard on some hot dogs for lunch ... he raved about how good it was -- just a shmear, topped with ketchup. I make a fabulous egg salad, inspired by the "Egg 'n' Onion" sandwich referred to in the movie "Harvey." (A spinster named Myrtle Mae is flirting with the sanitarium employee who has come to her house in search of an escaped patient -- Myrtle Mae's own mother, who shouldn't have been admitted in the first place -- and offers an egg 'n' onion sandwich as enticement ... it's hard to explain. If you haven't seen "Harvey," which is a great old movie, add it to your Netflix queue.) I usually make the salad with whole grain Dijon mustard, but felt adventurous this day and changed my routine -- a stellar decision, if I may applaud myself. It did wonders for hard-boiled eggs mixed with minced red onion, mayonnaise, salt and pepper ... as an old Brylcreem hair gel commercial used to say, "A little dab'll do ya."
For the Oscars on Sunday night, I offered Tom and Jeremy a buffet -- tropical chicken salad on rice crackers, fruit, peanut butter cookies, and both vegetables and potato chips for dipping into a new concoction. I made my new dip with 1 cup of the full-fat sour cream I had left over from making the pickle soup, adding 1 teaspoon each of paprika and cumin, a pinch of kosher salt, a splash of Tabasco, 1/2 teaspoon Ras el Hanout (a Moroccan spice mix I bought some time ago and don't seem to use often enough), a sprinkle of Cajun seasoning, and ... you guessed it! ... 1 tablespoon of my Mustard From Hell. Oh, it was a thing of beauty, whether with the salty kettle-cooked chips or the cool and colorful vegetables.
I've been saving the nubs and crusts from the many loaves of bread that Tom and I go through having rye toast for breakfast each morning, and am planning to make a savory bread pudding with it all at some point ... you already know that my mustard will be stirred into the custard. What else? I've already made a simple vinagrette. I make a lovely mustard cream sauce for pasta using Dijon mustard but may have to make a substitution the next time I serve it. I could also add some to the olive oil and lemon juice mix I use to baste roast chicken. This is such a fabulous product that it seems a shame to only use it for slathering on sandwiches.
So, join me in taking Connie's recommendation for the Mustard From Hell, and let me know what you think of it and how you end up using it ....
Mary Bilyeu has won or placed in more than 60 cooking contests and writes about her adventures as she tries to win prizes, feeds hungry teenagers and other loved ones and generally just has fun in the kitchen. The phrase "You Should Only Be Happy" (written in Hebrew on the stone pictured next to the blog's title) comes from Deuteronomy 16:15 and is a wish for all her readers as they cook along with her ... may you always be happy here! You can contact Mary at email@example.com. And look for her new food blog: foodfloozie.blogspot.com.