Horseradish is a perennial plant which also includes mustard, wasabi, broccoli, and cabbage. It grows up to 4.9 feet (1.5 meters) tall, and is cultivated primarily for its large, white, tapered root.
The intact horseradish root has hardly any scent. When cut or grated, enzymes break down sinigrin (a glucosinolate) to produce allyl isothiocyanate (mustard oil), which irritates the mucous membranes of the sinuses and eyes. Grated horseradish should be used immediately or preserved in vinegar for best flavor. Once exposed to air or heat it will begin to lose its pungency, darken in color, and become unpleasantly bitter tasting.
Nutrition: The fresh plant contains an average 79 mg of vitamin C per 100 g of raw horseradish.
Cooks use the terms “horseradish” or “prepared horseradish” to refer to the grated root of the horseradish plant mixed with vinegar. Prepared horseradish is white to creamy-beige in color. It will keep for months refrigerated but eventually will darken, indicating it is losing flavor and should be replaced. The leaves of the plant, while edible, are not commonly eaten, and are referred to as “horseradish greens”, which have a flavor of the root.
Baked Salmon with Horseradish Sauce
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Rinse filets and pat dry. In baking dish combine lemon juice and Worchestersauce. Add salmon and coat both sides with mixture. Combine mayonnaise and horseradish, mix well and spread over top of salmon filets. Sprinkle paprika over filets. Cover dish with foil. Bake in 400 degree F oven for eight minutes. Uncover and continue baking for 3 more minutes.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of horseradish for the following medical uses: Urinary tract problems, Fluid retention (edema), Cough, Bronchitis, Achy joints and muscles, Gout, Gallbladder disorders, Sciatic nerve pain, Colic, and Intestinal worms in children.
Side Effects, Precautions and Warnings
Horseradish is unsafe in children less than 4 years old. In young children it may cause digestive tract problems.
Horseradish in large amounts is unsafe when pregnant and breast-feeding. The mustard oil in Horseradish can be toxic and irritating. Horseradish tincture should not be used regularly or in large amounts because it might cause a miscarriage.
References and Resources