Horseradish is a source of vitamin C, iron, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and zinc. It is a circulatory and digestive stimulant and has antidepressant, antibacterial, anti-cancer, antioxidant, detoxifying and expectorant qualities.
Avoid horseradish if you have an underactive thyroid.
The stimulating and antibiotic properties are due to the fact that horseradish contains mustard oil, which also makes it effective for lung and urinary tract infections. You may have heard of the old-time remedy for lung infections known as a 'mustard plaster'. Horseradish is also a strong diuretic.
One of the first remedies I learned to make in herb school, introduced by Rosemary Gladstar, was Fire Cider.
Here's a recipe for Fire Cider. It can be used in many ways, including as a salad dressing.
1 quart Organic Apple Cider Vinegar
1/2 cup Horseradish root grated
1/8 cup of Garlic chopped
1/2 cup of Onion chopped
1/2 cup of Ginger grated
1 tsp Cayenne pepper
Place all ingredients in a quart jar and cover with Apple Cider Vinegar.
Steep for 8 weeks.
Strain into clean jar.
How to Use Your Fire Cider
~ Rub into sore muscles and aching joints.
~ Soak a clean cloth in Fire Cider to place on a congested chest.
~ Drink it straight or diluted in a bit of water or tomato juice.Start out with a tsp or so to test your tolerance level.
~ Mix with a bit of honey to ease a cough.
Mashed Potatoes and Horseradish
Add grated or prepared horseradish to your regular mashed potato recipe. You can also add to garlic mashed potatoes.
Use 3-4 Tablespoons to 3 pounds potatoes. A little goes a long way.
July has been designated as National Horseradish Month and there will be many festivals and events during the year. To learn more about it go to The Horseradish Festival website.
Read more about horseradish and other herbs at The Herb Companion website.