Saturday, February 20, 2010

The House Around the Corner - Crystallized Ginger

I make a LOT of ginger ale, and the ginger I use to make it is fine, just cultured.  But, c'mon... how much cultured ginger can you use?  I am planning to try this recipe soon.  It looks easy, good, and like a good way to use up too much GINGER!

 Crystallized Ginger

Crystallized ginger is often used in baking, I have a delicious ginger cookie recipe that I add it to and is elegant on a dessert tray when dipped in dark chocolate and allowed to dry. It is delicious and healthful to add to tea, and when eaten is known to help common aliments, such as nausea, inflammation, indigestion, heartburn and pain associated with arthritis.

It can be expensive to purchase, I once saw a small 4 ounce bottle of crystallized ginger priced at $12.00 in the spice aisle at the supermarket. It is VERY inexpensive to make and takes very little time. It stores for a long time, some say up to 2 years, which makes it easy to always have on hand. Following is the recipe I use;

Peel ginger ~ removing nibs (freeze for later use in recipes) and discard any brown spots.
Slice ginger (approx 1/8 inch)
Use a fork and tenderize ginger by poking holes into each slice
Toss sliced ginger in 2 cups of sugar
Bring 1 ½ cups of water with pinch of salt to a boil
Add sugar and ginger to water
Boil until a simple syrup forms and ginger is tender, stirring often
Strain ginger and place on paper towel
Reserve ginger syrup it can be used to flavor many things including tea
Toss ginger in sugar
Allow to dry on rack for 24 hours
Store in sealed container, I will keep it this way up to 3 months, but it never lasts that long.

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