The success of this recipe depends on the marriage of mustard and soy sauce. At first, this may seem an unlikely combination, but both ingredients come from the category known as condiments. The word condiment comes from the Latin condimentum, meaning seasoning, but the current use of condiment implies more than that. There are a host of seasonings, but condiments are typically seasonings which can be added by the diner after the dish has been declared finished by the chef. Chefs are sometimes resentful that a diner would consider adding further seasoning after the chef has judged the dish ready for consumption. Some chefs consider this such an affront to their expertise that condiments are banned from their restaurants.
Another strategy is to add the condiments during the dish preparation, which is what is happening in this and many other modern recipes. When the chef adds the condiment to the recipe, the condiment selection may become more complicated. Not just any mustard will do; here the chef calls for whole-grain mustard. A mustard condiment calls for mustard seeds to be mixed with water and other liquids. What distinguishes the panoply of mustards a shopper can find for sale is how the seeds are treated before mixing with the liquids. The seeds may be added whole, ground, cracked or even bruised. Various preparations of the seeds release enzymes within the seeds which in turn release other substances known collectively as mustard oil. The amount and nature of mustard oil in the preparation determines its heat and pungency.
This recipe comes the Real Simple website under the banner “20 Best Chicken Recipes on Pinterest.” Here is the link. The recipe is attributed to Sara Quessenberry from the January 2008 issue of the magazine. We thought the results were excellent. Next time, we may add new potatoes to the vegetables roasted with the chicken.
By the way, the yellow mustard familiar to many Americans is that color because of the turmeric added to the preparation, not from the mustard seeds. American yellow mustard is one of the mildest varieties available, so if you are accustomed to that blend, go lightly on other mustard preparations until you are certain you like it.