This is such an easy, delicious way to make the tangy flavor of homemade mustard come alive in your kitchen. A complex layering of flavors belies the simplicity of the process. Spike the flavor up with some finely grated horseradish, or ginger, or chili, if you like. Once you have the basics down, there’s room to tinker. We call for a mild kombucha, such as one made with white or green tea, but use a mild black tea kombucha if that is what you have at hand. The tannins in black tea, combined with the natural bitterness of the mustard seed, can be a bit of a heavy combination, but some folks like mustard with a punch, so use your judgment. Here, we used a green/black tea kombucha blend, seasoned with turmeric, ginger, allspice, and cinnamon, but a plain variety would work as well; so much flavor comes from the mustard seeds.
Ah, the mustard seeds! As you may know, mustard seeds come in several colors and flavors. The yellow seeds are the most versatile and balanced, not too bitter or too hot but full of flavor nonetheless. The black/brown varieties can be a bit more acrid or piquant; use them in this recipe blended with the yellow seeds if you want to ramp up the intensity. You can also sometimes find hot mustard seed, aka Chinese mustard, although it is less widely available; it is smaller, hotter, but generally less complex a flavor than the yellow. Use it in conjunction with the yellow seeds, if desired.
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