Mustard is an ancient and romantic spice, and throughout time has remained one of the world's most popular seasonings. Both the mustard seed and plant have been glorified for centuries in conversation, literature and poetry, and its use has been traced to prehistoric times.
The Chinese have grown mustard for more than 3,000 years. Egyptians consumed it by popping the seeds into their mouths while chewing meat. The Greeks used mustard to flavor roasts and stews. The Romans carried mustard seeds with them to France, savoring them along the road where the plants soon grew wild and flourished in the fertile hillsides.
Undoubtedly, the mustard capital of the world is Dijon in eastern France. This picturesque city gained its reputation as the home of master mustard makers in the 13th century. The French were passionate about mustard, considering it the condiment of kings. They passed strict laws governing what could be called Dijon mustard. The French still ensure that mustard labeled Dijon adheres to "appellation controllee" standards, much like fine French wines.
The most famous of the great Dijon mustard firms was founded in 1777. Monsieur Grey, who had developed a secret recipe for a strong mustard made with white wine, formed a partnership with Monsieur Poupon, who supplied the financial backing to manufacture the product.
The creamy mustard their partnership yielded remains the standard by which Dijon mustards are judged. Grey and Poupon also revolutionized the business by introducing the first automatic mustard machines, thus freeing workers from a backbreaking chore. Today, at 32 Rue de la Liberte in the heart of Dijon, one can visit the Grey Poupon building which over the years has become the mecca of mustard lovers the world over.
All Dijon mustard is made from brown or black mustard seeds - the strongest and most flavorful. After the seeds are ground and the hulls removed, white wine or vinegar is added along with cloves, cinnamon and other special spices and herbs.
Dijon-style mustards aren't always made in Dijon, but wherever they are made, there's a culinary kinship that unites them all. Grey Poupon Dijon Mustards sold in the United States are produced by the Nabisco Foods Company in accordance with the unique recipes dating back more than 200 years. Today, Grey Poupon is the nation's largest-selling Dijon mustard and is available in the original Dijon and Country Dijon styles.
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Though mustard is one of the oldest condiments known to man, only in recent years has Dijon mustard taken its place as a basic element in creative American cooking. As well as being dolloped over prepared meats, sausages and cheeses, many our met recipes now call for Grey Poupon Dijon Mustard. Chicken Dijon, Dijon vinegarette, Dijon bread and Dijon sausage soup are a few of the most popular dishes.
Monsieur Grey's timeless recipe has made Grey Poupon Dijon Mustard a classic. There are world travelers known to carry Grey Poupon Dijon Mustard with them wherever they go because they decided food without it just isn't worth eating! Truly, Grey Poupon is one of life's finer pleasures.