One of my farmers market pickups this past weekend was a chunk of fresh horseradish. I'd never cooked with it before, and was anxious to give it a try. I used an exceedingly simple Jean-Georges recipe that I thought would be a great basic intro, and got some terrible results. It was HORRIBLY bitter. I realize fresh horseradish is bitter by nature, and I'm aok with other bitter foods, but this was really quite extreme, certainly not pleasant, and bordering on inedible. Given that all of the Jean-Georges recipes I've tried over the years have been great, I have a hard time believing this was the intended result. So my question is, was this a problem with preparation, or did I get a lousy piece of horseradish (if there even is such a thing)?
As instructed by the recipe, I peeled the horseradish and sliced it thinly. I put it in a saucepan with water to cover, brought the water to a boil, and then simmered it for about an hour until the horseradish was tender. I drained and pureed it with a little bit of the simmering liquid and some creme fraiche, then used that mix to coat salmon fillets before roasting them.
Any ideas? My only thought was that at one point the simmering liquid had cooked about halfway down and I had to replenish it and bring it back to heat... but it seems unlikely that was the issue.
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