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Down the Lane
- Frugal Living - Natures Free Gifts
- Horseradish

Wild Horseradish

Foraging, identifying & uses for Wild Horseradish

Horseradish has been around for 400 years or so. It contains potassium, calcium, magnesium and phosphorus which along with very volatile oils makes it quite a pungant plant.
It's not far off the properties of mustard and many people use it as such, adding to many foods and not, as most would have it, for Roast Beef only.

I dentifying wild horseradish growing in a field

It's great served with smoked fish, you can add it to Mayonnaise and Cream to give them a bit of extra 'kick'.

Identifying Horseradish

Where you find it is pot luck really, round here, there's loads for everyone and could be that the field next to us once had a Shephers Cottage in it.
Not many people grow it in their gardens because it spreads under the soil like a weed, bit like Mint does. So, if you don't block the plants off, they'll take over.

However, it can be found in fields, sides of roads, almost anywhere really.
The main thing is to know what it looks like.
Basically, for quite some time during the summer, it can be mistaken for a Dock Leave, or even a Dandelion.
But in August, the leaves become longer, bright greener and have a sheen to them - very clean looking.

If in doubt, dig down and pull the root. It will be not dis-similar to a Parsnip, fairly long but sometimes a bit lumpy (see below)

If in doubt, break the root in two and have a smell - you can't mistake it then.

When grating in preparation, beware it has multiple potential of onion smell. I always do this outdoors and down wind !


The plant has a long history of medicinal uses.

It has been highly regarded by Medical people in Heart, Lung and Blood circles for it's low fat / high flavourness.

Adding a little grated horseradish to scrambled aggs is healthy and assist in sweating out colds.

Try using the sauce as you would use mustard with other foods

Long-keeping horseradish sauce

For the syrup: 1/2 pt white vinegar to 1/2/pt white sugar + a little salt.
Dig horseradish root in midsummer.Wash well and peel underwater.
Cut up the root roughly and put through the finest cutters of mincer.
In meantime make the syrup by dissolving the sugar and salt in tye vinegar over a low heat. Allow to go cold.
Use a wide-neck jar with a vinegar-proof lid. Pack in a little horseradish then add a little syrup - fill the jar in this manner. Make sure it is tightly packed and no air spaces are left.
This will keep 12 months or more.
To serve: To a tablespon of horseradish add same quantity of thick cream and extra vinegar to taste.

Wild Horseradish

By the time you've cut off the rough 'skins', these two would probably make about two medium jars

Nature's Free Gifts

Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson ______________________