Pas De Moutarde Française as they say in France. There’s an official shortage of French mustard in the shops. There are a couple of reasons as to why my favourite part of the condiment shelf is empty in the local Co-Op store. The first is that a drought in Canada has caused the shortage followed by something to do with the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Both Russia and Ukraine grow a huge amount of mustard seed and because of the conflict, none of it is getting through to the manufacturers. It’s still nothing like the amount of mustard seed Canada produces though which is something around 80% of the type used in French mustard. The French are also claiming that their own people are hoarding the stuff, having caught a whiff some time ago that there will be a supply problem with the raw material.
One of those small jars will last me a long time, probably passing the best-before date before I get to finish it off. If only the people of France knew the problems I am having with my pork pie treats or naff white bread ham sandwich! They are just not the same without that dark brown sludgy-looking stuff spread thinly across the meat.
“Ah, I hear you say, what’s wrong with English mustard?” Nothing at all, it’s just a little bit too rich for me and always gives me heartburn. Come to think of it, you would have thought all mustard was made from the same seeds. Not so. But, I can’t get my head around how the Canadian drought has only affected the French mustard seeds. Perhaps the English type doesn’t need as much water?
Marmite Non Non
What’s a man to do? I did try spreading a little Marmite on my party-size pork pie, but that didn’t work. I love Marmite too as well as pork pie, but they just don’t go together well. H.P.Sauce, no thank you. The French love their mustard, hence the stockpiling of the stuff in every available kitchen cupboard, pantry or stache secrète. Oh my, I wonder how long this shortage will go on for?
I never knew life with a pork pie and no mustard could be so bland. There are some pies, the speciality ones, usually homemade and they can be nice without any additional sludge slapped on them, but they tend to be very expensive and quite a distance from home before you can find a purveyor of such fine food.
With all this modern technology, I mean, you can call a friend from the moon on your Apple wristwatch or work out the meaning of life in nano-seconds on a laptop. French mustard seeds though, search on Google and it comes back with a sharp intake of breath! Zut Alors!