Ginger is a superfood. I say this because ginger has so many health benefits in addition to providing great taste to your food.
Ginger root is essentially a rhizome, although it is called root. Ginger is used in many cuisines. Primarily harvested in India, South East Asia, Australia, it is available all across the world in super and hypermarkets easily.
I always have fresh ginger in my kitchen. It is almost a staple.
You can use ginger in many ways either for its medicinal benefits or to avail of its great taste in your food.
But before you cook the ginger root, you have to prepare it. The preparations are easy and dependent upon what you intend to cook!
The First thing is to select good quality ginger root.
I will tell you what all to look for buying it.
How To Choose Good Ginger Root
- The ginger or ginger root has to be plump and fleshy. The ones which are dry will shrink in no time and will be of no real use to you.
- Secondly, prefer the ginger which has minimum bumps or outgrowths on it. It will be easier for you to peel it then.
Also, make sure it’s outer cover has a minimum or no blemishes. You might want to use this ginger root without peeling also.
- Third and probably the most important is smelling it to check the aroma. In stir fried dishes, this will matter pretty much.
Now that you have gone through the selection process let’s see how to prepare ginger root for cooking. The steps will involve peeling, slicing, chopping or grating.
Fresh ginger roots have very fine and delicate skin over them. You can take that out in more than one way.
I recommend using a spoon to scrape off its skin.
Hold the spoon inverted, with its convex side facing you. Start to scrape the skin off in a downward direction.
If you are not comfortable using a spoon, you can try scraping the skin off with a peeler. The same that you use for peeling potatoes.
If the skin is hard, use a sharp knife to peel it. You can either try to scrape the skin off with knife else, peel the skin with it.
But remember, do not peel the whole skin, peel only that part which you want to use.
Unpeeled ginger can be stored for a longer time.
Next step after peeling ginger root is to slice it properly.
After peeling, cut both the sides of your ginger and make it clean.
Now start slicing it, keeping it in a horizontal position.
The thickness of the round slices will determine the size of chopped pieces.
So make sure, if you want finely chopped pieces, keep the slices thin.
After you have sliced these roots, next step is to chop them. Many preparations demand only sliced ginger and not chopped.
So if you are using it for stir frying, make sure to use chopped ginger to get the best taste.
For chopping it, take the slices and stack them one above the other. Make a small stack else your knife will slip away.
After stacking, start chopping in one direction. You will get cylindrical pieces. Now further chop these into smaller pieces.
Grated ginger provides with a strong taste wherever it is used. Take a peeled, unsliced ginger and use a grater to grate it.
Pay attention while grating as there are chances your finger might get hurt.
Apart from the grating, if you want to make the puree of ginger, you can either do it in a food processor or use the conventional mortar and pestle for it.
While using mortar and pestle, tale minced or chopped pieces and grind them with a twisting motion.
I have used ginger to prepare tea, stir fries and much more. The Ginger tea has some very important medicinal benefits.
There are various possible ways in which you can consume ginger root.
How to eat ginger root?
Fresh ginger root with salt
If you love to eat the raw ginger root, but its strong taste is pushing you back, take a pinch of salt, dab the ginger slices on it and eat.
Whenever I suffer from cold and cough, I make sure I eat fine ginger slices with salt. It helps a lot in reducing cough.
Pureed ginger juice with honey
One more thing that I do during a cough and cold is juicing fresh ginger. Make its puree and take a fresh, clean cloth or fine mesh.
Juice the puree and take half tablespoon of this juice mixed with half tablespoon of honey.
Have it once during the day and your cough will be relieved significantly.
Ginger tea is always a delight. Not only does it taste well but also it has an irresistible aroma.
Peel the ginger and slice it into coins. Put these when you prepare the tea and treat your taste buds.
Check this article for instructions about how to make fresh ginger tea for many health benefits.
Ginger in stir fry
There are two ways you can add ginger root while stir frying.
If you like the taste of ginger, take 3-4 coin slices of this root and put in in the oil.
Keep medium flame and make sure it does not get burnt.
If you don’t want the fibres getting stuck in your mouth, better is to grate it and then use.
It will give a spectacular taste along with not giving you the fibre feel.
Ginger to flavor food
You can use grated ginger threads to garnish and flavor your food. Flavor your dumpling, soups, chicken or vegetables with it.
Medicinal benefits of ginger root
- It soothes and calms a cough and respiratory problems significantly. Also, it facilitates digestion.
- Ginger root lowers blood pressure and decreases the risk of cancer.
- Stimulates the circulatory system and lowers cholesterol.
- Help in nausea especially during early pregnancy.
How to store ginger root?
It is also very easy to store and keep ginger root for a longer time. To store it, you can simply get a plastic bag, cover the unpeeled ginger and freeze it.
It can live up to six months when frozen. However, check the quality before using it.
When it is peeled, it is not advisable to keep it without refrigeration and for long. After peeling, try to use the whole thing as soon as possible. Else, avoid peeling extra.
I am always glad to receive and address your queries. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to mention them in the comments here.
Hope you liked this article and found it an interesting read!