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Jewish Recipes --> Jewish Cooking Terms / Dictionary

Ginger is a tuber which is consumed whole as a delicacy, medicine or used as spice for cooking or tea. It is the underground stem of the ginger plant, Zingiber officinale. Besides its genus, the plant family to which it belongs--Zingiberaceae--was also named after ginger. Other notable members of this plant family are turmeric, cardamom and galangal.

The ginger plant has a long history of cultivation, having originated in Asia and is grown in India, Southeast Asia, West Africa and the Caribbean. It is sometimes called "root ginger" to distinguish it from other things that share the name "ginger".

Culinary uses

Young ginger rhizomes are juicy and fleshy with a very mild taste. They are often pickled in vinegar or sherry as a snack or just cooked as an ingredient in many dishes. They can also be stewed in boiling water to make ginger tea, to which honey is often added as a sweetener; sliced orange or lemon fruit may also be added. Mature ginger roots are fibrous and nearly dry. The juice from old ginger roots is extremely potent[citation needed] and is often used as a spice in Indian recipes and Chinese cuisine to flavor dishes such as seafood or mutton and vegetarian recipes. Powdered dry ginger root (ginger powder) is typically used to spice gingerbread and other recipes. Fresh ginger can be substituted for ground ginger at a ratio of 6 parts fresh for 1 part ground, although the flavors of fresh and dried ginger are not exactly interchangeable.

Ginger is also made into candy, is used as a flavoring for cookies, crackers and cake, and is the main flavor in ginger ale—a sweet, carbonated, non-alcoholic beverage, as well as the similar, but spicier ginger beer which is popular in the Caribbean.

Fresh ginger should be peeled before being eaten[citation needed]. For storage, the ginger should be wrapped tightly in a towel and placed in a plastic bag, and can be kept for about three weeks in a refrigerator and up to three months in a freezer

 

 
 
 

 

 
 

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