(Brassica nigra, and Sinapis alba)
Both black and white (yellow)
mustard seeds were popular in making the ever-popular condiment in period--
almost every collection of recipes gives one or more recipes for mustard sauce.
Mustard sauces generally contained crushed mustard seeds, wine and/vinegar,
possibly some oil, some sweetener, and other spices. They were especially served
with fish but were also used with mutton, pork and beef. Mustard poultices date to period as a counterirritant for aches and pains.
by C. Anne Wilson in Britain : "Probably the cheapest spice of all was
native-grown mustard seed. It was purchased for less than a farthing a pound for
the household of Dame Alice de Bryene in 1418-19; and in the course of a year
eighty-four pounds were consumed. Mustard was eaten with fresh and salt meat,
brawn, fresh fish and stockfish, and indeed was considered the best sauce for
any dish. As in Roman times mustard seed was pounded in the mortar and moistened
with vinegar. French mustard had powdered spices added to it, while Lombard
mustard was made up thick with honey, wine, and vinegar, and thinned for use
Medicinally it was used for:
- removing foreign bodies in the flesh,
- Falling sickness or lethargy,
to use it both
inwardly and outwardly to
- Rub the Nostrils, Forehead, and Temples to warm and
quicken the Spirits,
- drawing down Rhewm and other Viscuous Humors,
- Decoction of mustard in wine
for poisoning and venom, as well as agues.
- "The Seed taken either
by it self or with other things either in an Electuary or Drink, doth mightily
stir up Bodily lust, and helpeth the Spleen and pains in the sides, and gnawing
in the Bowels."
- As a gargle for sore throat and a poultice for toothache,
sciatica, gout and other joint aches.
- "It is also used to help the falling of
- The Seed bruised, mixed with Honey and applied, or made up with Wax,
taketh away the Marks, and black and blue spots of Bruises or the like, the
roughness or Scabbedness of the Skin, as also the Leprosie and lowsie evil.."
- Weak Stomachs - let such
whose Stomachs are so weak, they cannot digest their meat or appetite it, take
of Mustard Seed a dram, Cinnamon as much, and having beaten them to Pouder ad
half as much Mastich in Pouder, and with Gum Arabick dissolved in Rose Water,
make it up into Troches, of which they may take one of about half a dram weight
an hour or two before meals
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