Horseradish is a European plant of the cabbage family with long leaves, which is grown primarly for its roots. Horseradish is actually a root vegetable that is used as a spice. It comes from southeastern Europe and western Asia, but now it is popular all around the world. You can purchase horseradish that is already prepared, but you can also buy horseradish root and prepare horseradish on your own. You might have a bottle of horseradish somewhere in your fridge and you are not sure is this horseradish still good to use.
In this article you will find out if horseradish can go bad and what is its shelf life. Also, we will show you some storage techniques for horseradish and how to extend its shelf life. Read on and you will find out.
The Shelf Life of Horseradish
The shelf life of horseradish is generally for up to six months, but you should toss any unused but opened bottle of horseradish if it was stored more than three or four months. After this period horseradish is still good to eat, but it will lose a lot of its freshness and its specific flavor. If it is unopened, horseradish can last for up to a year, if it is stored properly. Even after this period of time horseradish will be safe to eat, but it will lose some of its quality. You should also know that prepared horseradish contains some preservatives, so its shelf life is longer.
Although horseradish is a plant material, you can extend its shelf life quite easily. You can simply freeze prepared horseradish that you have bought. Put it in an airtight plastic container and your horseradish will last for up to a year, but it will certainly lose some quality.
If you bought raw horseradish root, it is best to use it within a few weeks. The horseradish root can stay fresh in the fridge for one or two months, but it will start to lose the pungency much earlier. If you want to store the horseradish root for longer period of time, you should freeze it. First you need to grate the root and put it in the freezer. Never put whole pieces of horseradish root because they don’t freeze well.
How to Store Horseradish Properly?
When we buy prepared horseradish in a store, we buy it unrefrigerated and we should store it that way. If horseradish is unopened, you should store it in a dry and cool place, for example in the pantry. But, when you open the bottle, it should be stored in the fridge.
Also, it is important that the bottle is always tightly sealed. The proper storage of raw horseradish root includes wrapping the root tightly in a plastic wrap. It is important to avoid that any moisture enters the package. Before you use these leaves, you should check well if there are any signs of mold, black spots or changes in texture, because horseradish leaves will deteriorate over the time. If there are black spots you can simply cut them out and safely use the leaves, but if there is a change in the texture of horseradish leaves, you should throw them away. If you have prepared horseradish sauce on your own, you should store it in the fridge in an airtight jar.
How To Tell if Horseradish Has Gone Bad?
You will easily notice that your horseradish has gone bad, so you don’t have to worry. No matter if you have prepared horseradish all alone or you have bought it in a store, it can go bad after certain amount of time and if you haven’t stored it properly. Horseradish will start to smell very bad and it will lose its flavor.
Also, horseradish starts to darken in color or there may have appeared mold in the horseradish. If that happens, don’t eat and don’t serve the horseradish. You should throw it out immediately and buy a new bottle of horseradish. Have in mind that spoiled foods can cause many health risks, so you should avoid them. Sometimes you will have to discard horseradish not because it is spoiled, but because of the quality purposes.