This spicy member of the Brassica family, Cabbage, radish, broccoli, etc. Is grown for its hot pungent root. It can grow up to 4.5 feet with large wide leaves, and small white flowers on spikes. It is a perennial, and needs winter dormancy. When the leaves die down the root is harvested for culinary uses, the crown can be replanted to grow again, in fact it can be quite invasive, it grows in any type of moist rich soil.
The grated peeled root, should be used immediately or kept refrigerated for a couple of weeks. Make some horseradish cream with creme fresh, lemon, salt and plenty of finely grated root, it goes great with roasts, hams, cooked veg, mash.
Add it to mayo, ketchup or mustard, to give them a kick. It’s great with smoked salmon or trout, and is an essential ingredient in Gravlax curing preserve, with salt, sugar, pepper, lemon peel, dill, grated raw beetroot, juniper berries, or whatever takes your fancy, add it to raw salmon fillet, and press in the refrigerator for a few days till cured
Really we should eat this superfood more often, make tea from the flowers for a cold or the root to loosen a dry cough. Grind up the root to a pulp and apply it sparingly to aching joints, always try a small amount first in case of sensitivity. The raw leaves also have pain relieving properties. Compounds called glucosinolates have been discovered in a much higher concentration (10X) in horseradish than other Brassicas and to have anti cancer and detoxifying properties, against harmful chemicals.
A rub made with olive oil is great for warming up cold hands and feet.