Mustard is one of the oldest cultivated spices, herbs, condiments and healing foods. It is related to broccoli and so has a high sulfur content as well as other important minerals. Mustard, especially hot mustard, will open your sinuses; it is also a digestive aid in moderate amounts. The old fashioned mustard plaster was used as a chest pack for pneumonia, bronchitis and chest colds. The mustard brings the blood close to the surface of the skin, thus cleansing from within. And then there’s mustard gas used with such devastating results in World War I. As you can see, mustard can be as mild as the condiment on your hot dog or hot enough to burn you, seriously. There are three types mustard used today: black, brown and white, which more or less describes the color of the seed. What makes mustard hot (from any of these 3 types) is the addition of water to mustard powder. The water starts an enzymatic action that releases the heat. After about 20 minutes, add vinegar to the mustard mix to stop the action; otherwise it will get milder and milder as it sits. English mustard and Chinese mustard are hot. French dijon mustard such as Grey Poupon is blended with wine and herbs for a distinct flavor. American mustard is the mildest with a distinct vinegar tang to it. As a side note, if you’ve ever seen a field of mustard in bloom, it is a wondrous sight. It is a field of bright yellow that seems to fluoresce.