Fresh ginger root may not be as easy to use as powdered or jarred pureed ginger, but it sure beats the taste and quality. It just requires a little more effort.
Ginger in its freshest form is called ginger root. When buying, make sure you pick one that is firm when you give it a little squeeze. It shouldn't be wrinkly or shriveled.
From baking to Asian style cooking and soups its another favourite spice that I like to use a lot.
How To Prepare?
Now I always peel my ginger root by thinly slicing off the outer peel using a nice sharp knife. Personally I just find this faster and easier than scraping it with a spoon like others do, but its a preference thing really. Actually, I've seen some that don't bother peeling their ginger and leave the root intact. I suppose it can depend on how your using it in a dish, so if you go that root just give it a good scrub with cool water first. Personally I don't like the taste of the peel though. The good stuff's inside!
- One ginger root can go a long way, so I would only cut off what I need at the time.
- The best way I've found to grate ginger is to use a microplane. Like this one, it has a very fine grate on it that's perfect for grating not only ginger but also zesting your oranges, lemons and limes.
How To Store?
- Refrigerate any large pieces of root in a plastic zipper bag or wrapped in some paper towel. It will stay fresh up to 3 weeks.
- If your like me and you use a lot of grated ginger, then I would definitely recommend peeling and freezing it in a plastic bag/wrapped in paper towel. This is the best little trick, because when its frozen it comes out like fine a powder when grated like the picture you see above. No more struggling with annoying stringy, watery ginger!
- Frozen it will keep stored for up to a month.
Ground ginger is a lot more potent than fresh and also has a difference in taste, so I wouldn't recommend substituting the two, depending on what you are doing with it. Ground is usually best for baking with.
Fresh ginger root has more health benefits. It's wonderful for relieving nausea and motion sickness. Remember when your parents used to give you ginger ale when you had the flu? Well now you know why!