Horseradish is mentioned in Exodus 12:8 – “Everyone shall eat roast lamb that night with unleavened bread and bitter herbs.” Here’s a little history:
The name comes from the English. The horse part means a large, coarse or strong plant, sort of well like a strong horse. And the word radish comes from the Latin word root. And if you’ve ever seen fresh horseradish root, you’ll see what I mean.
In 1869, John Henry Heinz – we all know that name – made horseradish sauce from one of his mother’s recipes. He wanted to sell it too. He bottled the sauce in clear glass to show off how white it looked ─ a concept that was unheard of at the time. The product was one of the first condiments sold in the United States.
What Makes Horseradish Hot?
Horseradish is a member of the mustard family like kale, cauliflower,and the common radish) and is cultivated for its thick, fleshy white roots. The bite and aroma of the horseradish root comes from its volatile oils, which are are almost absent until it is grated or ground.
If you grate fresh horseradish, it’s pretty potent so should you do it outdoors?Theres ony a few of us brave souls who still grate horseradish. If you can, or in a place with plenty of ventilation. Now vinegar will tame the bite so if after you grate it, you pour a bit of clear vinegar over it right away, it will be less hot. If you wait a few minutes for the oils to develop, and then put the vinegar on, it can be pretty pungent. Now the leaves are edible, too, with less of a bite.
Antibiotic, has vitamin C and calcium.
What about Japanese horseradish, called Wasabi?
They’re not even related. Wasabi is grown mostly in Japan and it’s hard to grow, requiring a rocky stream or riverbed containing nutrients.
But horseradish is easy to grow just about anywhere. And unless you want it forever and to spread, plant it in a container.
Classic Cocktail Sauce with variations
1 jar (10 ounces) chili sauce
2-3 teaspoons prepared horseradish, to taste
Juice of 1⁄2 lemon
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
Combine all ingredients and refrigerate until ready to use. Serve with chilled, cooked shrimp.
Mix-ins – Add to the above recipe for a fresh, new taste. Southwest Cocktail Sauce
Add – 1 teaspoon cumin
Juice of 1⁄2 lime (omit lemon juice) 1 teaspoon chopped, fresh cilantro
Asian Cocktail Sauce
Add – 1 teaspoon soy sauce
1⁄2 teaspoon sesame seeds
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger root
Buffalo Cocktail Sauce
Add – 1⁄2 teaspoon hot sauce
1/3 cup crumbled blue cheese
Freshly ground black pepper