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Alternative To English Mustard

Asked by cindynord. Answered on 9th October 2020

Full question

What is a good substitute for English mustard in the Chicken Barley? And is it dry powder or wet?

Image of Nigella's Chicken Barley
Photo by Jonathan Lovekin
Chicken Barley
By Nigella
  • 14
  • 2

Our answer

Nigella's recipe for Chicken Barley (from AT MY TABLE) adds 4 teaspoons of English mustard to the cooking liquid. If just English mustard is listed then it always means the ready-made variety as dried mustard powder is usually listed as such. If you have the powder, mix it with cold water in the quantities suggested on the package, let it stand for 10 minutes (to let the flavour develop) and then use 4 teaspoons of this paste.

English mustard is made from a combination of ground yellow mustard seeds and turmeric, which gives it a bright yellow colour. Sometimes wheat flour is included as a thickener, so not all English mustards are gluten-free. English mustard is usually very hot flavour-wise ("sinus-clearing") and in the Chicken Barley it adds piquancy to the cooking liquid. Nigella has frequently mentioned that English mustard is one of her favourite condiments. It can be more difficult to find English mustard outside the UK, in which case Dijon mustard would be the closest alternative, though it has a milder flavour. If you wanted something a bit more assertive then we suspect that ready-made wasabi paste could also be used as an alternative.

Bara Brith

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