6 January 2013, by gj
It’s been over 10 years now since Mandolin and I quit smoking, the best thing we ever did for ourselves and our family.
It probably will come as no shock that I was a very heavy smoker,
3 packs and more per day.
‘Moderation’ was never a word used to describe me.
What made it more interesting is that I also went through menopause during that time.
“Interesting’ is probably not the word Mandolin would use.
Suffice it to say that ‘the change’ was very dramatic.
An unexpected effect hit my tastebuds.
Until this point I never liked anything even remotely spicy; a little onion was about as far as I would go.
I would have thought after quitting smoking that I would be even more sensitive to strong flavors.
Whatever the reason, I quickly developed a love for hot food – Jalapeños, Garlic, Hot Wings…Wasabi- Hot Wings dipped in Wasabi!
There happens to now be a bottle of hot sauce in my desk at work.
It is as if my taste buds want to make up for lost time.
Naturally this led to planting Horseradish (this is, after all, a blog about horseradish.)
Here’s how to grow it:
1. Get a horseradish root from your local produce department.
2. Plant in a deep container that has good drainage.
3. Set that container on rocks or a cement base (so the tiny roots cannot get out the bottom). Horseradish can be extremely invasive.
4. Water as needed.
5. Wait until the first hard frost kills the leaves.
6. Dig up as much as you can find (there will be roots left that will grow next year).
If you make homemade or ‘prepared’ horseradish, beware!
Grate it outside or near an open window.
Your eyes and nose will thank you.
Botanical name: Amoracia rusticana
Yield: One root will produce many more and continue to do so every year
Harvest: After a hard frost is best, harvest late fall or very early spring
Storage: Wash, wrap and refrigerate, or store unwashed in root cellar or other cold holding; freeze or water bath can prepared horseradish
Use: Most often served with meat but can add a little zing to many dishes; believed to have antibacterial properties so is helpful to ease cold symptoms.