Horseradish has a pungent, biting flavor and can actually burn the sinuses. Horseradish is prepared by peeling the root and then grating it and mixing it with vinegar. In this simple form, prepared horseradish can be used as a condiment, as an ingredient in cocktails, salad dressings and much more.
Russian dressing is made with prepared horseradish, as is the traditional Bloody Mary cocktail.
Grated horseradish root will quickly turn bitter unless it is mixed with vinegar, but when prepared in this way horseradish can be stored in the refrigerator for several months.
Note that prepared horseradish is not the same as horseradish sauce. Horseradish sauce is prepared horseradish that has had cream, sour cream or mayonnaise added, which makes it milder and creamier. Horseradish sauce is frequently served with roast beef.