Ginger is often classified as a spice, but is actually a root.
Not only does it add a wonderful spicy flavour to food, but it gives your energy levels a boost and is believed to have valuable health benefits.
If you can get hold of it, fresh ginger has a wonderful flavour, but dried ginger will also work well, particularly in biscuits and cakes.
- Choose fresh ginger with skin that isn't wrinkled and avoid any that have mould on the broken surfaces.
You'll want to peel the roots before using, so chunkier ginger with larger sections is easier to use than smaller ginger with lots of "knobbly bits"!
Peel the root either with a potato peeler or a sharp knife.
Then grate, chop finely or slice, before cooking.
Dried, ground ginger:
Keep in an airtight container and add sparingly to cooked dishes and baked recipes.
More Ginger InformationGinger root comes in many different varieties. There are over 50 in India alone, each with a varying level of flavour and pungency!
Ginger juice or grated fresh ginger root makes a delicious addition to spice up fruit juices and smoothies. Try breakfast juice for a tasty recipe.
Fresh ginger and ground ginger have slightly different flavours and you should use dried ginger sparingly, because it's very strong. Fresh ginger is best used in "stove-top" cooking and dried ginger works well for baking.
It's another so-called "superfood" because of its 2000 year history of being used in herbal medicine.
It doesn't really matter how you eat it - raw, cooked, powdered, pickled, crystallised, it's still full of health benefits.Did you know...?
Ginger is said to be excellent for both travel sickness and morning sickness (during pregnancy).
Some people swear by eating ginger biscuits. Others like to finely chop 1/2 inch of fresh ginger and steep in boiling water for 5 minutes, to make a ginger tea.
The fresh root is also thought to be effective against colds, flu symptoms, coughs, headaches and digestive problems.
Banana And Ginger Biscuits Faced with an opened banana that my toddler had insisted on, but then refused to eat, I decided to experiment with this recipe. I wanted to use it in some biscuits, with some root ginger, to see if you could reduce the amount of fat and sugar in them. And the result lasted less than 24 hours... That counts as a success in our house! Ingredients
Makes up to 20
- 50g butter (softened)
- 1 large banana
- 100g golden syrup
- 50g caster sugar (optional - if the banana is sweet, you might not want the sugar)
- ½ inch root ginger (or 1 teaspoon ginger powder)
- 175g plain flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 large egg or 2 small ones
- Preheat the oven to 180 C.
- Peel the ginger and either chop it very finely or grate it finely.
- Gently heat the butter, syrup, sugar and ginger in a saucepan, until the butter and sugar have melted.
- Allow to cool slightly, then add the flour and baking powder.
- Mash the banana and add to the mixture.
- Add the eggs and beat well. It should be a thick mixture.
- Now for the messy bit:
Grease a large baking tray. Take a tablespoon of the biscuit mixture and use your hands to roll it into a ball. Squash until flat, about 5mm thick. Put on the tray.
- Continue until the tray is full, with a few centimetres between each biscuit.
- Bake for 12 minutes, or until the biscuits are lightly risen and golden brown.
- Allow to cool before eating.
I found I had some mixture spare, so I put it in a sandwich bag in the fridge and made some more biscuits the next day... Anyway, that's my excuse!
- Banana And Ginger Biscuits
Faced with an opened banana that my toddler had insisted on, but then refused to eat, I decided to experiment with this recipe. I wanted to use it in some biscuits, with some root ginger, to see if you could reduce the amount of fat and sugar in them. And the result lasted less than 24 hours... That counts as a success in our house!
- Blackberry Smoothie
Yesterday evening brought with it late August sunshine and a gorgeous and delicious walk in the local nature reserve, tupperware in hand!
We came home with the first of several (hopefully) tubs full of tender, sweet, shining blackberries.
We had some of them with apples in a pie, and this morning I just could not resist adding them to our morning smoothie - I HAD to see what the colour would be like.
- Blackcurrant and Ginger Compote
This compote recipe comes from our friends over at The Blackcurrant Foundation, from their Chocolate and Blackcurrant Torte Recipe.
We love the compote recipe in its own right, so we've separated it out for you to enjoy with sweet or savoury dishes. A pot of this on standby means vanilla ice-cream just got a lot more interesting!
- Breakfast Juice
If you have a juicer, this recipe takes just a few minutes to make. And it's a great way to boost your energy levels for the day.
- Chickpea "Chole" with Ginger and Tomatoes
This goes wonderfully with Spinach Aloo and Cinnamon and Pea Basmati Rice.
- Ginger And Garlic Pak Choi
Pak choi goes really well with ginger and garlic – which are both so-called “superfoods” and immune system boosters. So this recipe is not only tasty, but good for you. Whatever next?!?
- Honey & Ginger Poached Pears
This is a delicious recipe, ideal for entertaining. It takes very little preparation, then you just leave it to cool for 4 hours, so you can make it well in advance and whip up some cream at the last minute to impress your guests!
- Jerusalem Artichokes With Pine Nuts
This is a lovely way of serving Jerusalem artichokes. The garlic and ginger give the dish a spicy, warming feel, while the toasted pine nuts beautifully compliment the flavour of the artichokes.
- Parsnip And Chickpea Curry
This is a great way to use winter root vegetables. Cooked slowly, they can develop a lovely sweet flavour, which works well as a curry.
- Pumpkin Pie
This classic North American dessert was sent in by Gramma Julie. Over the years, she's developed short cuts that make this pumpkin pie as easy as possible.
- Rhubarb And Ginger Ice Cream
Great for a sunny afternoon treat, this recipe works well as an ice cream or a frozen yoghurt. Ginger and rhubarb are a delicious combination and using them in an ice cream is an unusual treat.
- Rhubarb Chutney by Matt Tebbutt
This non-dessert rhubarb recipe makes a great addition to our selection, and has been provided to us very generously by TV Chef Matt Tebbutt.
- Rhubarb, Ginger & Orange Crumble
A delicious alternative to the classic rhubarb crumble recipe. See the variations for using ginger & orange.
- Runner Bean Stir Fry
A deliciously quick and easy recipe for runner beans. The ginger and soy in the sauce go well with the sesame seeds and the kidney beans add a wonderful colour and extra protein.
- Spiced Rhubarb
Spiced rhubarb makes a great warming dessert. It's a lovely way of enjoying fresh rhubarb and works well with the delicate, early-season forced rhubarb, as well as the stronger-flavoured later season variety.
- Tasty Spicy Okra
This recipe has been sent in by Kay. This is what Kay wrote about the recipe.
"I love this way of cooking okra because its quick and easy, and you can experiment with the spices, or use (for example) lime juice to mix the spices instead of water.
The woman who showed me how to do it is called Kirti, and she was teaching me methods rather than recipes. Unfortunately therefore, I can't give you the added delight of the aromas, shelves full of jars, delightful cookware and enchanting atmosphere in her kitchen, or even any exact quantities! But try it anyway - its a great way of mixing spices, and the fact that they start off so dry is what prevents the okra going gluey."
- Thai Style Squash Curry
This curry is easy to make and pretty quick. Just make the paste, chop the veggies and cook it all in a wok (or large frying pan) with the coconut milk. Works well with pumpkin, too.
- Wimbledon Juice
Classic early summer ingredients combine to make this Wimbledon celebration juice. So if you can tear yourself away from strawberries and cream with Champagne, you might want to give this one a try!
Got one? Send us your recipe!
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