What's surprising about this recipe is that it turns the eye-watering horseradish beast into a tamed and mild-mannered gentleman. I love horseradish, anyway though, just for that crazy kick, but am always sad that it doesn't seem to pair with more foods and that I use it quite sparingly.
Never fear! You can lavish this lovely Horseradish Cashew Cream onto just about any food. It's heavenly on everything I've tried so far--fish, lamb's lettuce, fennel, braised red cabbage... I've even taste-tested it on until-death-do-us-part-horseradish-haters, and it's converted them forever after to horseradish lovers. It works brilliantly as a sauce, dip, or dressing.
Standard horseradish recipes and prepared store-bought versions are full of dairy, sugar, vegetable oils, and all sorts of yucky stuff. This recipe dumps the junk and uses the natural sweetness of cashews to temper the spiciness of horseradish. A very nice report appearing in Life Extension Magazine (2009) describes horseradish and its medicinal properties:
"The glucosinolates in the horseradish, Armoracia rusticana, have the potential to increase human resistance to cancer and environmental toxins. They have powerful antioxidant properties and can also be used to relieve sinus and respiratory distress. Glucosinolates also act as natural antibiotics against different types of infections because of their known toxicity to specific bacteria and fungi, as well as their ability to increase blood flow to the infected area and more rapidly remove the waste products from that region of the body. Mosbah Kushad, author of the University of Illinois anticancer study has also been involved in studies of broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and other cruciferous vegetables known to contain glucosinolates. His work shows that horseradish has significantly higher levels. 'Horseradish contains more than 10-fold higher glucosinolates than broccoli, so you do not need much horseradish to benefit.' In fact, a little dab on your steak will go a long way to providing important health benefits."
You can up the ante on the kick and add as much grated horseradish as you would like to this cream. Be wild! Although not ideal, if you can't locate fresh horseradish, you can also use a small amount of prepared horseradish sauce (2 tablespoons) instead of the fresh horseradish and apple cider vinegar.