Ginger is the most used and well-known spice around the globe. You will hardly find someone who does not know about this plant. It is widely used in almost every culinary cuisine worldwide, from its powdered form to whole and paste. So, what is it? And why it plays a vital role in improving the flavor of human cuisines?
Ginger is a flowering plant. The botanical name of this plant is Zingiber Officinale. It belongs to the Zingiberaceae family of plants, including few other spices like cardamom, turmeric, galangal, and more. The rhizomes of ginger roots of this plant are used as a spice. In some regions, it is also used as a fold medicine to cure various diseases and pain. Especially, its usage for curing nausea is huge. Ginger is the native plant of Southeast Asia where it was first originated. But eventually, its use expanded. And now it has as important as salt in all cuisines around the world.
What does Ginger Look Like?
The rhizomes of ginger have a very firm, rough, striated, and knotty texture. It has different varieties, and the color of its flesh varies based on its variety. It either comes in red, yellow, or white color. The white color is a prominent one. It is common and almost found everywhere. Besides, it has light-brown and cream-color skin. The skin is either thin or thick, depending on its type and its maturity. It also has dry, powder, oil, and juice forms. You will also find ginger paste which is a common thing nowadays.
Where does Ginger Come From?
Ginger comes from Southeast Asia. The plant ginger was first planted in that region by the Austronesian people. Afterward, the plant was transported to other regions of the Indo-Pacific during the expansion of the Austronesians and reached Hawaii, where people began large production of Ginger. Eventually, Europeans, ancient Romans, and Greeks also began using this spice, and the trade began. Besides, Asia is considered one of the top exporters of ginger since the old times. While in the language of botany, Ginger comes from the plant that belongs to the Zingiberaceae family.
How is Ginger Made?
For making Ginger, you should look for a proper place for planting its plant. Once you are done with it, you can begin planting the seed called rhizomes. Make sure to treat the seeds before you plant them. Then, take a plowed or dug to break the soil, then make water channels. The best season to plant Ginger is before the monsoon. Once you plant the seed, take proper care to ensure better growth. Then, you can begin harvesting it once it reaches the growth stage. You can use fresh ginger or dry it. For drying it, put it under sunlight. You can also use dry Ginger to get the powdered form of this spice.
What Does Ginger Taste Like?
Ginger tastes somewhere between sweet and peppery. Its flavor also resembles garlic. Ginger is warm, a little spicy, and powerful in taste. Besides, this spice also has a nice aroma with a slight touch of spiciness and pungent.
How is Ginger Used in Cooking?
While cooking, you should always fry it a little brown. Never burn it; otherwise, the taste will turn bitter. You can add it along with onions. Putting Ginger directly on the food is not a good idea because of its strong taste. It is better to fry it in oil before adding other ingredients.
What Types of Cuisines Use Ginger?
Ginger is used in a wide range of culinary cuisines and drinks. It has high usage in Indian, Asian, and Caribbean cuisines. This spice is used in vegetables, curries, soups, meat, seafood, Bar B Q, and much more. While in western cuisines, Ginger is used in cookies, bread, and preserves. You will also find large amounts of drinks that use Ginger, especially Ginger tea.
What is a Ginger Substitute?
Ginger has four main substitutes. These are allspice, mace, cardamom, and cinnamon. However, making the right combination of these ingredients is highly important otherwise, the taste can be completely different from Ginger.
Where to Buy Ginger?
Ginger is a common spice. It is easily available in shops. Therefore, you can find it anywhere around you. However, for high-quality Ginger, you must search few shops. But we are saving you from work. We have picked some best Gingers to buy. These products are listed below.
- Nature’s Way Premium Herbal Ginger Root, 1,100 mg per serving, 240 Capsules
- Natural Ginger Tummydrops (Resealable Bag of 33 Individually Wrapped Drops) Certified Oregon Tilth USDA Organic, Non-GMO Project, GFCO Gluten-Free, and Kof-K Kosher
- Naturevibe Botanicals Premium Organic Ginger Root Powder (1lb), Zingiber officinale Roscoe | Keto-Friendly | Non-GMO and Gluten-Free