Purveyor of Bollocks to the Crowned Heads of Europe
Sunday, 7 May 2017
Swedes have rotten herring, Koreans have rotten cabbage and we have mustard
This jar of 'English' mustard was an impulse purchase from Lidl, where it cost pence rather the the pounds it would have in Waitrose.
Having looked at it and tasted it, I can only think that the procurers of Lidl handed a non-English person a jar of Colman's and said something like, "Make me x amount of thousands jars of this stuff."
The person given this task - having doused the fire out in his or her mouth and returned from the local A&E on a two week course of yoghurt therapy - probably thought, "They cannot possibly want me to reproduce this. Nobody could possibly eat it in any more than homeopathic quantities."
So the first thing they did was to add five times as much sugar as Colman's - if, indeed, Colman uses any sugar at all - then increase the Turmeric content proportionately on the grounds that you just cannot have too much of it.
My father used to make his own mustard and - like most other fathers of that era - constantly chanted the mantra of Mr Colman saying that all of his profits came from the mustard which people left on the side of the plate. Colman's explanation for his wealth was quoted every time we had a roast dinner, even though nobody else ate the stuff but him. The secondary reason why we didn't eat it was that we could not stand listening to the bloody Colman's quote again when we inevitably left most of it on the side of the plate.
He would go to the cupboard and bring out the tin of English mustard powder (one tin will last the average human more than one lifetime except during times of war, when all stocks are requisitioned for use as chemical weaponry) take out a tiny quantity of the powder and mix it with a few drops of water in a small receptacle.
He would put a dab of the paste on a bit of meat, pull a face like a bulldog sucking a wasp, break out in a heavy sweat, then say, "Lovely," in a very unconvincing sort of way. He never backed down. Never.
I still have a half a tin of that mustard powder in the cupboard, saved when my sister was about to throw it out after he died. It never goes off. Nothing would survive entering the tin.