Mustard Seeds

Mustard seeds are the small round seeds of about 1mm to 2mm diameter of the mustard plant. The plant is a cruciferous vegetable related to cabbage, broccoli and Brussels sprouts. There are about 40 variants of the plant and out of those, there are just 3 whose seeds are used as spices while cooking food. They are White, Brown and Black mustard.

Mustard seeds are a rich source of oil and protein. The seed has oil as high as 46-48%, and whole seed meal has 43.6% protein.

Read on to know more!

Product Description

Mustard seeds are the small round seeds of about 1mm to 2mm diameter of the mustard plant. The plant is a cruciferous vegetable related to cabbage, broccoli and Brussels sprouts. There are about 40 variants of the plant and out of those, there are just 3 whose seeds are used as spices while cooking food. They are White, Brown and Black mustard.

 

White Mustard – Sinapis Alba or Brassica Alba:

White mustard seeds are actually light straw-yellow coloured and the largest of the three types. They are slightly pungent- lesser than the other two varieties. The one exception is the small yellow Chinese or ‘oriental’ mustard seed, which is very peppery. White or yellow mustard seeds are the primary ingredient in American mustards and are also used in pickling spice mixes.

White Mustard Seeds

White Mustard Seeds

 

Brown Mustard – Brassica Juncea:

Native to the sub-Himalayan plains of Northern India, brown mustard seeds are actually dark yellow in colour and have a pungent acrid taste. They are commonly used for making Dijon mustard (a traditional mustard condiment of France, named after the town of Dijon in Burgundy, France, which was a centre of mustard making in the late Middle Ages and was granted exclusive rights in France in the 17th century), pickling and flavouring meats like corned beef. In addition to French, many European mustards are made with brown mustard and it is used a lot in Indian cooking too.

Brown Mustard Seeds

Brown Mustard Seeds

Black Mustard – Brassica Nigra:

Black mustard seeds are grown in South Asia and they have the most pungent taste among the three varieties.

 

Mustard seeds are a rich source of oil and protein. The seed has oil as high as 46-48%, and whole seed meal has 43.6% protein. The seeds are usually roasted until they pop. They are also planted to grow saag (greens) which are stir-fried and eaten as a vegetable preparation, called sarson ka saag in Urdu and Hindi (sarron da saag in Punjabi).

Black mustard seeds in plate isolated on white background

Black mustard seeds

Mustard seeds are sold either whole or as a ground powder. Grinding and mixing the seeds with water, vinegar or other liquids creates the yellow condiment known as prepared mustard.

Ground Mustard Seeds

Ground Mustard Seeds

 

Mustard Oil

There are two kinds of mustard oil that are obtained from mustard seeds. They are as follows:

  • A fatty vegetable oil acquired by pressing the seeds,
  • An essential oil obtained by extracting the volatile oil by distillation from a mixture of ground mustard seeds and water.

The oil exhibits features similar to the seeds that it comes from. It is pungent when raw but the pungency goes away when it is heated. Rather, it becomes sweet on being heated. It is used for cooking purposes primarily in Bengal and Northern India. But it contains toxic isothiocyanates, therefore it must be strongly heated until smoking, immediately before frying any food in it. It is best not to use it raw.

Mustard Oil

Mustard Oil

 

Interesting Fact: An archaic name for the seed is the eye of newt. Often misunderstood for an actual eye of a new, this name has been popularly associated with witchcraft ever since it was mentioned as an ingredient to a witch’s brew in Shakespeare’s famous play Macbeth. Source (https://ganga108.wordpress.com/2014/04/19/mustard-seeds/ )

Selection: Mustard seeds are available in the market in different forms including whole, ground or powdered. The powdered mustard is generally a mix of brown and white seeds with turmeric or saffron to add colour and flavour. Some other types of mustards available in the market are chilli mustard powder, peppercorn, mint, and chive. Just like other food items, try to select organically grown mustard seeds or powder since this will give you more assurance that the herbs have not been irradiated.

 

Storage:  Mustard seeds should be preserved by keeping them in an airtight container in humid free conditions. These will last for about a year.

Ground mustard seeds, on the other hand, will last up to 6 months when stored in similar conditions.

Prepared mustard and mustard oil should both be refrigerated.

Here is the nutritional value for 2 tsp mustard seeds.

Nutrient Amount
Selenium 11.8%
Manganese 5%
Omega -3 Fats 4.5%
Magnesium 3.7%
Phosphorous 3.3%
Tryptophan 3.1%
Calories 1.0%

 

Source: http://www.onlyfoods.net/mustard-seeds.html

  • Magnesium and selenium content in mustard seeds provides relief to people suffering from rheumatic arthritis and reduces the occurrence of a migraine and severity of asthma.
  • When mixed with aloe vera gel, it becomes a great combination to hydrate your skin.
  • Mustard seeds help in relieving congestion.
  • Include mustard in your daily spices to avoid nightshades.
  • Selenium content of the mustard seeds helps against cancer cell formation.
  • The seeds are high in plant sterols like brassicasterol, campesterol, sitosterol, avenasterol and stigmasterol.
  • Presence of nutrients like copper, iron, magnesium and selenium help in the treatment of blood pressure and menopause relief.
  • They have high-calorie content– 100g of Mustard seeds provide 508 calories.
  • They are made of quality proteins and dietary fibre.
  • Mustard seeds help in lowering the blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
  • Mustard seeds are rich in minerals, antioxidants, phytonutrients and vitamins.
  • The seeds have essential B-complex vitamins like floats, thiamin, riboflavin, pyridoxine and pantothenic acid. These vitamins help in regulating body metabolism, nervous system functioning and enzyme synthesis.
  • Mustard seeds act as a natural scrub. you can add them to rose or lavender essential oil. Apply the mixture to scrub your face and exfoliate the dead skin.
  • Nutrients like carotene and lutein along with vitamin A, C and K make mustard seeds a great anti-oxidant which helps slow ageing.
  • Presence of Sulphur in these seeds gives them anti-fungal properties which helps fight skin infections.
  • Heart failure can be caused due to improper usage.
  • Mustard seeds can cause Diarrhea.
  • If consumed daily mustard seeds can damage the throat.
  • Black mustard can cause skin Blisters and Skin damage.
  • Heart failure can be caused due to improper usage.
  • A pregnant lady should not be served food cooked in mustard oil.

You can follow these recipes for some amazing dishes incorporating mustard seeds

  1. Indian Potatoes with Black and Yellow Mustard Seeds: http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/indian-potatoes

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  1. Pickled mustard seeds: https://www.chefsteps.com/activities/pickled-mustard-seed

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  1. Cauliflower with Melted Onions and Mustard Seeds: http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/cauliflower-melted-onions-and-mustard-seeds

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  1. Chicken with mustard seeds: https://realfood.tesco.com/recipes/chicken-with-mustard-seeds.html

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  1. Spicy Mustard Chicken Curry Recipe: https://www.boldsky.com/cookery/non-vegetarian/chicken/spicy-mustard-chicken-curry-recipe-035076.html

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