There are two kinds of mustard seeds: white (or yellow) and brown (Asian). Yellow, or American-style mustard, is tinted a vibrant gold by the addition of the spice turmeric. It is made from white mustard seeds. The famous French Dijon mustard is made with brown mustard seeds and white wine. Bright yellow English mustard, resulting from a mixture of white and brown seeds and turmeric, is very hot. German mustards, chiefly Dusseldorf, are made from brown seeds and have a mild sweet-and-sour flavor. Thin and pale of color, Chinese mustard is generally the hottest of all. Coarse-grained mustards have crushed seeds blended into the finished product. Sugar or honey are sometimes added for a sweet finish. Raspberries, horseradish, wine, bourbon and herbs are among the ingredients found in specialty mustards.
Mustards can be used in salad dressings and marinades, as a condiment with grilled meats, on sandwiches and spread on poultry before cooking. Prepared mustards should be refrigerated after opening. If they are not contaminated by other foods, they will keep indefinitely.
A combination of mustard seeds is ground to a powder to make the spice that is typically called dry mustard. See Herb and Spice entry for additional information.