The peppery flavor of this charoset is typically Yemenite. Other Middle Eastern communities–the Iraqis and Persians, for instance–use the same fruits to make charoset but they omit the red pepper and substitute ground cinnamon and ground cardamom. Kurdish Jews add grated quince to the mixture.
This word simply means horseradish in Russian. To Jews, however, it represents the beet-colored horseradish condiment that is served with fish, whether fried or gefilte. Another Passover specialty, chrein is best made a couple of months before the festival. Fresh horseradish root is available year round from Chinese markets. Wear rubber gloves when handling the horseradish, and don't touch your eyes. Because this is a very strong condiment, use only a little at each meal, and store remainder in small jars in the refrigerator.
2 large or 4 small cooked beets
2 horseradish roots, about 4 inches long
1 tablespoon brown sugar or honey
1 teaspoon salt
about 2 cups wine or cider vinegar
1. Peel and grate the beets and the horseradish. (Grate the horseradish on the grating attachment of a food processor because, like onions, it causes tearing.)
2. Combine the beets and horseradish in a bowl, and stir in the brown sugar or honey and salt.
3. Gradually add the vinegar; the mixture should be fairly liquid.
4. Store in small, sterilized jars with tight-fitting lids.
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