Scientific Name:Brassica juncea
About this Herb:An annual, the lower leaves have 3 – 5 deep lobes along their margins. The basal and lower stem leaves are attached directly to the stem, and you will often see the base of the leaves surrounding the stem where they attach to it. The leaf margins are often so deeply lobed that they almost appear to be made up of individual leaflets. Flowers are borne in branched flowering stems; each flower has four green sepals within which are borne four petals that are bright yellow. Each flower develops into an elongated fruit that becomes 3 to 7 cm (1 to 2.75 in) long when ripe.
There are several plant species of the Mustard plant in the genera Brassica and Sinapis whose small mustard seeds are used as a spice and, by grinding and mixing them with water, vinegar or other liquids, are turned into the condiment known as mustard or prepared mustard. The seeds are also pressed to make mustard oil, and the edible leaves can be eaten as mustard greens. Brassica juncea, is a species of mustard plant. Sub varieties include southern Giant Curled Mustard, which resembles a headless cabbage such as kale, but with a distinct horseradish-mustard flavor. It is also known as Green Mustard Cabbage.
Common Names:Mustard Greens, Indian Mustard, Chinese Mustard, Leaf Mustard, Giant Curled Mustard, Green Mustard Cabbage
Uses:The leaves, the seeds, and the stem of this mustard variety are edible. The plant appears in some form in African, Italian, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and soul food cuisine.
As a powder, mustard is used as an appetite stimulant, anti-inflammatory, diuretic, laxative, digestive aid, emetic and an irritant. Mustard plant is also used to combat sinus problems. It enhances blood circulation. Mustard plant gives mustard flour when sprinkled in socks save the toes from frostbite. Seeds of mustard plant are used as preservatives. They are used as a medicine for spleen and liver complaints. Mustard plant also gives mustard plaster which if used as a dressing, increases blood flow to injured areas of the body. Mustard plaster is also used to lessen rheumatism, arthritis and toothache. Muster plaster is an official treatment for reducing fever.
Mustard flour is obtained through grinding or crushing the mustard seeds. The dust is kept in dark colored containers and in cool places. It is recommended that the mustard flour be used in the first 2-3 weeks after its preparation, after this period its curative capabilities are reduced considerably. Internally, the mustard flour is administered in milk or wine, and externally, at the preparation of poultices.
Mustard Seed is a stimulant that warms and invigorates the circulatory system, encourages blood flow, and is also said to aid in the metabolism of fat in the body. It is also considered a diaphoretic, an agent that helps to increase perspiration, which can lower fever and cleanse toxins from the body through the skin. Seeds of mustard plant are used as preservatives. They are used as a medicine for spleen and liver complaints. This factor is also useful for colds and flu.
Used externally, Mustard Seeds are famous for their rubefacient properties by dilating the blood vessels and increasing the blood flow toward the surface of the skin, warming and reddening the affected area and encouraging the removal of toxins. Poultices and Mustard plasters are a tried-and-true remedy to relieve the pain of arthritic joints, rheumatism, sciatica, neuralgia, neck pain, backache, "charley horse," and muscle pain.
Mustard Seed's topical use also extends to the relief of respiratory infections when used in baths, poultices, and plasters. Mustard Seed helps treat bronchitis, chest congestion, pneumonia, croup, and pleurisy.
Applications:Poultice: The poultice is prepared from 100g of mustard flour, mixed with warm water, of a temperature of 25-30 C. degrees until a soft paste is formed. The paste is then put between two cloths and applied on the troublesome area. It is kept for about a quarter of an hour, then removed with the possibility of applying it on another area. For children, or for those who cannot tolerate the irritating property of mustard, the poultice is prepared with 50g mustard flour and 100g flax flour.
Plaster: Prepared like a poultice, but the herbs are placed between two pieces of cloth and applied to the affected area. This method prevents irritation because the herb is not directly touching the skin.
Capsule: Follow instructions on bottle.
Eating: Greens are eaten in salads and cooked as a side vegetable dish. Seeds can be added to salads, vegetables, dressings and sauces. Yellow and brown mustard can be used in many ways.