Ginger – rich in superstar antioxidants with exotic names, like gingerol, shagoal, and zingerone. It is beneficial for a kaleidescope of ailments, most notably appetite loss, stomach upset, stomachache, colic, diarrhea, dyspepsia, flatulence, motion sickness, nausea, pain, motion sickness, arthritis, migraine headaches, coughs and upper respiratory illnessess. It can even be used as a topical anaglesic! Studies show that it is effective in reducing tumors, controlling inflammation, and inhibiting cancer growth and formation. Indian culture uses ginger in a large variety of dishes, and promotes it as an immunity enhancer to be consumed whenever you feel an illness on the horizon.
Ginger’s flesh comes in yellow, orange, and white varieties. In my opinion, it tastes best when fresh, and does not need to be peeled before shredding, grating, mincing and pureeing. It is easier to cut when slicing in the direction of the fiber, rather than against it. Pickled ginger can be enjoyed with more than just sushi as a palate cleanser – try pairing it with soups, sandwiches, salads and grains. Have you ever tried ginger ice cream? Mmmm, scrumptious! Teas are another wonderful way to help your palate adjust to ginger’s powerful kick and increase your consumption. Ginger is nicely combined in spicy chai blends, green teas, and other herbal blends. My favorite ginger tea is an herbal made by Yogi Teas – called “Ginger Tea”.
Some people find ginger is too strong and therefore avoid it. In my experience, it’s an acquired taste. I became accustomed to it mostly through drinking it in teas and eating an occasional Indian or Thai dish. Sometimes, I chop up a little candied ginger and cook it into my oatmeal. While preparing this article, I learned that fresh ginger should be stored at room temperature. Oops! I’ve always stored it in the refrigerator. Dried ginger is about five-six times stronger than fresh, so use five-six times more when substituting fresh for dried in a recipe. If ginger is too strong in your opinion, using it fresh may help you to tone it down in any dish. Another yummy ginger food is chocolate-covered ginger. Who can argue with that? =-)
Have another suggestion for ginger, or a recipe to share? Please put it in the comments below. I love your contribution! Thanks for reading.