Every year around Easter time is the Jewish festival of Passover and a time when Jews go hunting for horseradish. It is needed as part of a traditional meal remembering the Jewish exodus from Egypt. Several years ago, I bought some horseradish at Passover time. Then I got given some more. I had two massive horseradish roots and remembering that my mum never bought horseradish, planted some in my garden.
Horseradish once planted in the ground is very difficult to get rid of. So much so that many people would prefer to plant it in pots to restrict it from spreading or the roots getting too deep. I planted my horseradish right at the back of my garden in a place where I didn’t mind it spreading and year after year I went and dug some up.
When we moved house I again dug some up from my garden and planted it at my new house. Again year after year we have had horseradish! This time though I planted it in a raised bed in my veg garden and I am a little worried that I planted it too close to the house – although I have tried to get to the bottom of the roots to relocate it, I have had no success!
I find it doesn’t matter what time of year I dig it up, there is always some there. It is easier to find at certain times of year though i.e. when you can see the leaves and if you have just dug it up it will take a while to grow back. I have planted it at different times of year as well and it doesn’t seem to matter!
I grew some in a pot this year as well. It was the first time since I bought it that I have seen the bottom of a horseradish root! The root was fairly thin though as you can see in the picture- I think it needed a bigger pot!
Our horseradish has lasted us at least 7 years and counting! We use small flakes of it raw it as part of the Passover meal and I also make horseradish sauce out of it sometimes. If you are thinking of grinding up horseradish it is very important to make sure you do it in a well ventilated area or outside because as this article says ‘the chemical reaction triggered creates a gas that not only makes you weep, but can irritate lungs and nostrils’. I ground the horseradish I pulled out of the pot recently and thought I would slow dry it. All that happened was that it lost all it’s flavour – does anyone have any tips on drying horseradish?
I love having an ongoing supply of horseradish as it is an easy way to add a bit of kick to our meals. It is a great addition to fish pies, fish lasagna, goes well with beef, in fact could go well with any meal where a bit of heat is required!
Have you ever grown horseradish? Do you have any horseradish recipes to share? I would love to hear your stories/ advice in the comments below!