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[p]Several people interested in "my" (actually John Thorne's) rub/paste for ribs have had trouble finding black mustard seed. They've recently disappeared from my local markets as well, and catalogs that used to carry them no longer do - although some have brown mustard seeds.[p]I recently bought some browns at Adriana's Caravan, a wonderful spice shop here, and was told they were 'the same' as the black seeds. I've read otherwise, so I e-mailed Rochelle Zabarkas, the store's owner, to ask about the difference.[p]Here's her reply:[p]"We used to carry black, brown, and yellow mustard seeds. However, over the past year and a half I have been unable to get the black seeds. For some unknown reason they are not being imported into the country. Although black and brown seeds are botanically different, the flavor
is so similar that no one would be able to discern the difference."[p]Penzey's carries the brown seeds, and Rochelle sells them by mail order (800-316-0820). A PDF version of her catalog can be downloaded from her web site (below).[p]Hope this is helpful for fellow rib fans -[p]Cathy