My friend Liza Pyle introduced me to this sweet-and-tart mustard, which I included in my Pudding Hollow Cookbook. It’s lovely as a straight mustard or as a dip for pretzels or vegetables (if you want to dilute the dip, mix the mustard with some mayonnaise). I usually order a large tin of Colman’s Mustard from Avery’s Store in Charlemont, Massachusetts, so I can make several batches to give as gifts. If you want to give the mustard away, just be sure to tell the recipient to keep it in the refrigerator.
4 ounces (about 1–1/4 cups) dry mustard
1 cup herbal vinegar (Liza uses tarragon)
1/4 pound (1 stick) sweet butter, cut into chunks
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
Place the mustard in a small non-reactive mixing bowl, and pour the vinegar over it. Do not blend the two at this stage. Cover the mixture, and let it stand overnight.
The next day, have the butter cut and the sugar and salt measured so that they can be grabbed quickly when they are needed. Place the mustard mixture in the top of a double boiler, and mix it with a wire whisk over hot water. Add the eggs one at a time, whisking continuously until they are thoroughly mixed.
Add the sugar, butter, and salt, and cook over hot water for 5 minutes, whisking. Liza warns against overcooking as the eggs may curdle. It’s better to have slightly runny mustard (it will thickens as it cools anyway) than to risk this.
Ladle the mustard into hot, clean jars. Cool them slightly; then cover and refrigerate them. The mustard will take a couple of weeks to develop its full flavor and will keep for months thereafter in the fridge. Makes 3 to 4 cups.