Flavored mustard, such as garlic mustard, is popular with many cooks, and one of the most popular types is dill mustard. Fresh or dried dill leaves or seeds lend a pungent, slightly bitter flavor or a milder, suave flavor, depending on the cooking technique. Another flavor factor is the style of mustard — mild champagne-based or spicy Louisiana style. A person may purchase dill mustard from commercial producers or make it at home.
There are many recipes available for making mustard, including dill mustard. One of the easiest recipes uses commercially prepared mustard as a base. A cook may add finely chopped fresh or dried dill weed. Some of these simple recipes suggest adding a vegetable oil, such as olive or canola, for a smoother texture. Other cooks prefer to make the dill mustard from scratch without using any prepared mustard.
Typically, a mustard recipe requires dry mustard, which is available at most markets in the spice aisle; liquid, such as vinegar, wine, or water; and an egg or two. Some recipes suggest letting the dry mustard and dill steep or age in the liquid for a few hours before cooking the mustard. This allows the dill to impart a nice robust flavor into the mustard. Experts caution that people must refrigerate any homemade mustard to prevent bacteria growth.
The basic ratio of dry mustard to liquid is usually two parts liquid to four parts dry mustard, although individual recipes may change this ratio slightly. The liquid may be alcohol-based, such as champagne, wine, or flat beer, or an acid, such as vinegar. Often recipes call for a combination of vinegar and water. The vinegar may be white, cider, or herb vinegar. Some people steep the ferny dill leaves and seeds in the vinegar before using it to make the mustard.
Cooks and commercial producers often add other flavors to the dill mustard. Popular adaptations are horseradish dill, lemon dill, and garlic dill. Common uses for dill mustard include a bread spread for sandwiches and the base for sauces. Generally, these sauces include fish sauce for salmon; meat sauces like a lamb chop sauce; and a dressing, including salad, coleslaw, and potato salad dressing.
The flavor of the mustard may be pungent or mild. Hot, spicy mustard is a result of using cold liquid. A milder, suaver mustard requires boiled liquids. The hot liquid inhibits two chemicals — myrosin and sinigrin — that cause the mustard to be hot and pungent. Typically, Louisiana-style mustard is made by the cold method, which gives it the spiciness. Another way cooks add spiciness to dill mustard is by adding horseradish.