Home-made rustic balsamic mustard

Today I am baking a brisket. It was more or less pre-made, meaning I only have to bake it as it was already marinated and everything, so I cannot claim any merit for it. But I decided to make some mustard.

I did some researching on-line on American, Italian and German websites and all have a different way to go about making mustard. Italians apparently soak the seeds in hot water and then add sort of a roux to the preparation, German do it quick and mix mustard seed powder with water and vinegar and then advise to wait a couple of days to consume, Americans soak the seeds for days and then blend everything and advise to wait before consuming it, English don’t wait any time before consuming the mustard once is done. Also American and German strongly oppose warming up the seeds claiming it will ruin the mustard, Italians do warm them up, occasionally even boil them.

All of this makes me think that it doesn’t really matter what you do, mix mustard seeds with something acidic and you will get something good.


I did not have much time, plus I wanted to eat the mustard today, so I made up my own recipe. And it turned out OK, actually it turned out good!

Home-made rustic balsamic mustard

Ingredients

  • 1 oz. brown mustard seeds
  • 2 oz. yellow mustard seeds
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar

Directions

  1. I soaked brown and yellow mustard seeds in a mixture of balsamic vinegar and water where I dissolved a bit of salt and a bit of sugar. I let the seed soak for about one hour, and then I blended everything with a stab mixer. I had to add a bit of water to get the right consistency for the mustard. I tried it and it is pretty spicy, supposedly it should mellow out in a couple of days.
  2. I will probably never know, because I happen to like my mustard very spicy, so I am pretty sure it will be done by then.

Pine nut and balsamic vinegar ravioli sauce

The other day I got home late and hungry from climbing at the gym and instead of finding something prepared my wonderful BF, I found my BF soundly asleep after a hard day of work. I was pretty hungry, so I opened the fridge and I threw together a super quick dish. I started with goat cheese ravioli from Trader’s Joe and tried to make a quick sauce to complement them. I chose a pretty bold mix of balsamic vinegar, capers and pine nuts that works best with strongly flavored ravioli. The taste of spinach ravioli would get lost under this mix, but the one of goat cheese is enhanced without getting lost.

Pine nut and balsamic vinegar ravioli sauce

Ingredients

  • ravioli
  • 1 tbs pine nuts
  • 1 tbs capers
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tbs balsamic vinegar
  • EVOO

Directions

  1. First I prepared the water for the ravioli and let it warm up. Then I took a spoon of capers and a spoon of pin nuts and I roughly chopped them both. I warmed up a bit of oil in a small pan and added in the pine nuts and the capers as well as some oregano. I let the pine nuts and capers toast for a couple of minutes and then added a bit of balsamic vinegar. Be careful with the balsamic vinegar, you only want so much that it gives the a hint of flavor, not so much that it will turn the sauce vinegary and picklish. I let the vinegar evaporate and caramelized a bit and then turn off the heat. Finally I cooked the ravioli according to the instructions and dressed them with the sauce.
  2. Next time I think I’ll add some caramelized onion to the mix. I think it should play well with the other ingredients.

Balsamic vinegar chicken wings

And is again time to play with Cooked in Translation and this month we are fusioning an American classic: chicken wings.

As soon as Lin proposed chicken wings as this month’s theme for Cooked in Translation, I decided I had to use balsamic vinegar in the glaze. It just seemed the right ingredient to “Italinize” this dish. Plus I had tried some balsamic vinegar chicken wings a while ago and I loved the idea. Unfortunately those chicken wings were not very vinegary, nor very good. So I figured this was the perfect occasion to create some good balsamic vinegar chicken wings.

Turns out I did it! I made some pretty rocking chicken wings if I may say so myself. They are sticky and sweet and pungent and vinegary and even have a smoky aftertaste thanks to the the sugars caramelizing. My mom was very skeptical, but she ended up loving them, so give them a try!

And don’t forget to link up your fusion version of this classic at the bottom of this post!

#CookedInTranslation: balsamic vinegar chicken wings

Ingredients

  • 6 chicken wings
  • 1 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp corn starch
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • salt

Directions

  1. Divide the chicken wings into thirds by cutting through the joints.
  2. Bake the wings in the oven at 400F until well crisped (about 20 minutes). The wings will be crispier if you arrange them on a rake that allows the fat to drain.
  3. While the wings are cooking, mix the vinegar with the corn starch and the sugar in a pot and cook until the vinegar reduces to a syrupy consistency.
  4. Toss the cooked wings with enough sauce to lightly coat them (about half the sauce) and salt to taste.
  5. serve the wings with the rest of the sauce