Fresh ginger root can look like an intimidating ingredient when you see the gnarly, coral reef looking pieces in a basket at the store. It’s actually really easy to cook with and gives an amazing flavor to lots of Asian and Indian inspired dishes, baked goods and even drinks! It’s bright, super flavorful, and gives a kick of spiciness that is completely different from chili peppers. Not burn your mouth heat, but a warming, pleasant heat.
Peeling the skin off the ginger root is the first step. I find that using a spoon is the easiest way to do this. The skin easily comes off, and you don’t waste any of the ginger root flesh the way you would when using a knife. You can cut off the tiny little knobs before you peel to make it easier too.
Now, depending on your recipe, you can slice, sliver, dice or grate your ginger. If you are going to sliver or dice it, you’ll start by using your paring knife to make thin slices of your peeled ginger. You can then stack the slices and cut slivers. Now you can take the slivers a few at a time and finely dice as much as you need for your recipe.
If your recipe calls for grated ginger, it’s even easier! Take your peeled ginger and grate with a fine microplane grater. You’ll get sort of a ginger paste that dissolves into the food, and gives a more subtle ginger flavor.
You can also cut the peeled ginger into coins. I use this shape for making homemade ginger vodka! Let me know if you have any good tips or tricks for using ginger!