Ginger – Versatile, Healthy and Oh So Tasty
Spicy, sweet, peppery, fruity, crunchy….these are just a few of the thousands of words that you could use to describe ginger.
Ginger is an extremely versatile ingredients that is and can be featured in almost any style of dish from anywhere in the world. What’s more is that there are different ways you can find ginger besides the fresh root, so you can almost always find a way to incorporate it. Then let’s not forget all of the health properties that belong to our beloved ginger root.
All Around the World
I think my personal favorite type of dish that ginger is featured in would be Asian. Any and all Asian food reign supreme as one of my favorite types of food anyways. Ginger seems to blend with the sometimes more bold flavors of Asian dishes.
Ginger gives a good little kick to some of the favorite American sweets too. Around this time of year, when the hoodies are coming out and the leaves are covering the yard, you’ll find ginger holding hands with the likes of cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice. This combo gives any pumpkin application the perfect spice that you’ve come to grow and love. You know…. PUMPKIN spice. You can’t rightly call it “pumpkin spice” or “pumpkin pie spice” without it having ginger.
The Fridge, Spice Rack, Pantry and a Little Glass Bottle…..Thingy
A strong reason you should consider keeping ginger around, (if you don’t already) is all of the different ways that you can find it around markets and stores. Ask anyone who has uses this ingredient on a regular basis, you’ll want to have each one around.
Long story short, ginger starts as a lumpy, brown root. You can buy it in the store that way, and this is the freshest possible way to obtain it, other than growing it yourself. (Which apparently is very easy to do.)
When working with a fresh ginger root, you approach a broad selection of different ways to prepare and incorporate it into your dish. Of course, peeling it before hand for each preparation, grating the ginger is quite possibly the most popular. The root is very fibrous, so grating help to handle the fibers and separate some of them from the pulp of the ginger, where all the goodness is. You can grate up a knob of ginger the size of your thumb and throw it into an Asian style stir fry. Even into an apple, pear, or pumpkin desert for starters.
Less popular ways to prepare fresh ginger, and probably because the fibers stay intact, are your standard ways of chopping. Meaning dicing and mincing. Admittedly, the only times I have every use larger pieces of ginger, like that you get from chopping, have been in stir fries and various veggie sautés.
I’m sure most everyone knows of dried and ground ginger root in a little jar. Like this one from McKormick with that most recognizable red lid.
This is the brand I have always gone with. Maybe I need to branch out, maybe I’m using the best. I don’t know. Regardless, it works for me and everything I use it in. It packs a punch of flavor and you can really taste it whenever you use it.
I tend to reach for the dried version mostly when baking. My family has a recipe for a super moist pumpkin bread that’s loaded with ginger that really fills the house with the warm, spicy smell. On the savory side, add some dried ginger to a sauce that you would prefer to be smooth or glaze something with, or sprinkle it into a vinaigrette for a bright twist.
What is really cool, and seems to be unknown to most people in my life that I talk to about this, is the relation of ginger to a few other popular spices. Ever heard of turmeric or cardamom? Both are kin to ginger, and possess some of the same properties and qualities.
Kind of Fresh
Definitely worth a mention, is the little tube of ginger paste I keep in the refrigerator. You’ll find this in the refrigerated fresh herb section in your super market. Basically, it’s paste of pureed ginger…PERFECT. I use this whenever I don’t have fresh ginger around, which I seem to only really want or need it when it’s not in my house. You know how it goes.
Grab some HERE if you’re interested.
Essentially…The Superman of Ginger
Last but not oh most certainly not the least, and definitely the newest in my life is the humble little bottle of Ginger Essential Oil. This is where I wanted to talk about the health benefits of ginger, as the essential oil form is the easiest form for you to apply topically and benefit from its aromatic qualities.
Ginger is great for aiding in digestion and nausea. It’s perfect for alleviating stomach cramps and settling nausea just by rubbing a drop or two with equal parts of a carrier oil (like coconut or almond) and rub in a clockwise motion around your belly button. This will also work for menstrual pain! For nausea simply inhaling the oil from the bottle or diffusing 8-10 drops. Also, this is a little more involved, but you can take this in a veggie pill capsule with a drop or two of a carrier oil to help with tummy aches.
Ginger essential oil is also known to be uplifting and energizing. Again, simply inhaling the aroma of the oil will get you up and out of your chair and ready for the day. I like wearing it on a diffuser necklace so I catch a little whiff all day long at random times.
For general muscle and joint pain, you can apply ginger essential oil with a carrier, massage in and experience a warming relief. It literally feels like a tight muscle melts away.
Last but not least, you can cook with the essential oil too. It’s great for flavoring things like candy, icing, glazes, fillings, etc. It’s great in a pinch for sauces and stir fries too. Definitely don’t forget about putting in in drinks either. Think….holiday cocktail.
If you’re interested in getting your hands on some Ginger Essential Oil, I can definitely help you with that! My wife and I are essential oil distributors for the company Young Living! Click HERE to go purchase the oil yourself. You can choose the retail option and find your ginger oil or whatever else you may be looking to get and checkout. OR you could go the wholesale route.
In a nutshell, this means you’ll be purchasing a starter kit from Young Living. What this does is it activates you as a wholesale member and you’ll start saving 24% on everything you purchase. Besides the savings, there are copious amounts of reasons for becoming a wholesale member. Click HERE (Link to come )to learn more about becoming a wholesale member, what it means and what a start kit exactly is.
This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to ginger. If you want to read excruciating details about ginger’s origin and things like that, it’s definitely out there. This is the knowledge that I poses on this powerful little root that I wanted to share to everyone else. I can only urge you so much to try out ginger for yourself. It’s a powerful tool to wield in the kitchen and in the medicine cabinet.
If you are curious at all about Ginger Essential Oil, or any Essential Oils AT ALL, PLEASE CONTACT ME at
Grab some for yourself at this link: Young Living Essential Oils