This is white mustard. It is in full bloom now !

Many people, post picture of these spectacular blooming mustard, and write poems.

But you may also thing of more material things, that is, to eat it. But do not wait, since flowering will soon end.

senape 1Pick a substantial amount of flowering tops, and put the flowers into a green salad, of lettuce, young spinachs or young wild greens. Or also tomatoes, if you prefer but , if you want local seasonal products, it is not time, yet. Do not use rocket salad,  or radish, to avoid hiding flowers’ flavour.

You will have a marked mustard flavour,  very original, which strength will depend on the amount you use, with a sweetish aromatic nectar background.

But you have to adopt a strategy: once at home, spread the flowers, a bit in the sun, but not for long, otherwise they will wilt.  In this way, all the small insects living in the flowers (quite  a lot !), which presence you probably did not notice,  will go away. They go quickly, but there is no other way, since you cannot deeply wash the flowers, that are easily damaged.

Of course: if you do this operation inside the house, the insects will run away there, so… better on a balcony.

senape 3How to recognise white mustard from other plants of the same family (Brassicaceae or Cruciferae), with yellow flowers ?

Rather simple. Do not consider leaves too much, since they will not be very useful. First, let’s exclude something completely different: look for elongated flowering tops of yellow flowers, more compact at their tops, where flowers are not yet open.. Flowers have four petals, arranged in cross.

And then, to distinguish THIS species: consider a flowering top a bit older, which basal flowers are already gone, and the small fruit is starting growing. Its base is very hairy and its apex, called “beak”, is laterally compressed.

And if you make a mistake with another plant of the Brassica family ? The flowers will probably have a different taste, not as good. Taste them.