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Pickled Mustard Seed

Pickled Mustard Seeds with Chilies

Renée Robinson

Here’s a Condiment You Won’t Want to be Without.

There are so many things I’ve wanted to cook throughout the years, but never got around to making. Pickled mustard seeds have been on my list for ages and I finally did it.

After reading a ton of recipes, I went out on my own because I knew what I wanted. I loved the description of these someone had written saying they’re like caviar – only mustard. I also read complaints saying they’d ended up tasting bitter and saw where some people even advocate blanching them as many as 8 times until the water no longer tastes bitter. Well, this didn’t appeal to me at all because I think you’l lose a lot of the flavor when blanching them. I tasted my yellow mustard seeds and detected no bitterness at all, so I simply chose to rinse them really well and then let them soak for an hour in white wine vinegar and salt before proceeding.

This couldn’t be easier. After they’d soaked I simply cooked them for 20 minutes with some dried chilies, a large shallot, light brown sugar, a bay leaf, and some black peppercorns. After they’d cooled, I removed the shallot and stirred in a little cider vinegar. 

Oh My Gosh. Are these delicious! I love the texture. It really does remind me of caviar. And these are loaded with flavor. I added them in little spoonfuls to the top of a vinaigrette based potato salad and everyone asked for more mustard seeds. I can see all kinds of ways to use these and I doubt I’ll ever be without them again. This is a condiment I intend to keep on hand. And about that bitterness? Nope. There was none. 

Pickled Mustard Seeds with Chilies

Recipe by Renée Robinson

12 -15


Yellow Mustard Seed are Pickled with Dried Red Chilies, Brown Sugar, White Wine Vinegar, and Cider Vinegar

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  • 1/2 cup yellow mustard seeds

  • 3/4 cup white wine vinegar

  • 1 tablespoon Diamond Kosher salt

  • 3 small dried whole red chilies

  • 1 large shallot, sliced in half

  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 10 black peppercorns

  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar


  • Rinse the mustard seeds thoroughly in a fine meshed sieve and drain well. Place in a bowl, add the white wine vinegar and salt. Stir in the mustard seeds and let sit for 1 hour.
  • Combine the seeds and liquid with the chilies, shallot, brown sugar, bay leaf , and peppercorns in a medium size saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium high heat. Let cook gently for 20 minutes. Removed from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
  • Remove the halved shallot, stir in the cider vinegar and chill. They say this will keep for about 3 months in the refrigerator. But I doubt it will last that long. Enjoy!

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