Tuesday, 18 September 2012


Today was all about goodies that come from the garden.  First off was shredding a massive zucchini, which I cannot wait to bake with tomorrow!  Followed by my second attempt at horseradish.  The first time involved thinking we knew what we were doing, only to end up with a flavourless horseradish look alike.  This time, thanks to my sister-in-law, research was done prior to the event.

What you will need;
2 cups of chopped horseradish 
1 1/2 cups of vinegar 
4 teaspoons of sugar 
1/2 teaspoon of canning salt

Pre-sterilized jars and lids
A really big pot
Food processor
Paring Knife
Cutting board
A good cup of coffee, as it is a slightly time consuming process, but worth it for some good horseradish! (not like the "hot" varieties in the store..)

First step, gather up the roots of the plant.  This was much easier last time as my husband did all the digging, but we had a giggle or two getting our nice flats all covered in dirt, as neither of us thought to wear appropriate footwear..  With the help of my 2 year old niece we were able to gather up a pretty decent harvest.

This was about half the root system of a 3' plant.

Next is the prepping of the root, which is where I messed up last time.  There are 3 layers to this root, the technical terms of these are unknown to me, so I will call them; outer, middle and core.  The layer that you will be using is the "middle" one. (the core is what I used the first time, no flavour there..)  To get the "outer" layer off, we found peeling the bigger roots and scrubbing the smaller ones (with a vegetable scrub) were the methods that worked best for us.

After getting the "outer" layer off, it is time to peel the "middle" layer off of the core.  At first I started scoring the root with a paring knife and peeling the layer off by hand.  However, about a third of the way in, my nails felt like they were being pulled away from my nail bed (ouch), so I decided to let the knife to the job.  Using a knife made finding the core a little harder, but my fingers were happy with the decision.  

Now it is time to make the "middle" layer a little more manageable by putting it in the food processor.  At this point you're only doing a rough chop so that you are able to measure for the amount needed in the recipe.  Empty out the food processor into a separate bowl.  Measure 2 cups of chopped horseradish, 1 1/2 cups of vinegar, 4 teaspoons of sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon of canning salt into the food processor bowl.  Turn it on high for approximately 2 minutes to get a nice finely chopped horseradish.  Scoop the mixture into pre sterilized jars and complete the canning process. (click on "canning" for a link on proper canning technique)  
Our final product! Yet another great day spent with my sister-in-law!

We did read on one site, that for optimal flavour the mixture should sit for 3 weeks in a properly sealed jar.  There are mixed reviews as to length of time for an expiration date of this product, so always stay on the safe side...trust your instincts if what you see or smell just isn't quite right..

For the original recipe go here

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