Saturday, September 22, 2012

Fresh Ginger Cooking

Alan and Barbara Hall of Mother's Earth Farm, participating farmers at the Lomax Incubator Farm, provided a few wonderful recipes for cooking with their fresh ginger. Ginger makes so many dishes taste wonderful, and fresh ginger make an amazing difference over the dried stuff available in many food markets. Baby ginger, which the Hall family sells at the Davidson Market, has a sweet ginger flavor, with no bitterness and mild "heat". No peeling is necessary, so there is no waste. Ginger tops, sold with the ginger, can be sliced and dried, or frozen and used in recipes where a mild ginger taste is preferred.
The kale recipe below was modified slightly by Carol Schmidt, by adding some fresh garlic.

Kale With Fresh Ginger
1 bunch kale, cut into bite-sized pieces
2 TBSP fresh ginger, sliced thinly (leave whole when slicing so they are round and beautiful in the dish when finished)
2 TBSP soy sauce
2 TBSP diced fresh garlic
Olive oil for cooking
Sauté kale in olive oil until just bright green (the pan will be relatively hot). Add ginger and garlic, and cook one more minute, stirring kale, ginger and garlic together. Add soy sauce to deglaze the pan and stir vigorously to coat the kale, ginger and garlic with soy sauce,  about 30 seconds. Serve hot. Can be served over fish, grilled chicken, brown rice, or as a vegetable side dish. 
Spicy Mango Sauce
1 mango, ripe, cut into small chunks
2-3 oz fresh baby ginger, finely minced
1 stalk lemongrass, cut into 3-4 inch long pieces
1/4 cup orange juice
1 chili pepper, thinly sliced, seeds included if extra spiciness desired
Pinch of salt
Pinch of garlic powder
1 TSP honey
Place all ingredients in a sauce pan. Simmer until thick. Remove lemongrass stalks. Serve hot. Serve with tuna steaks, pork, grilled chicken, or any strong fish. Serve over grains or rice.

Ginger Lemonade
6 cups of water, divided
1 ¼ cups sugar
¼ cup grated fresh ginger
1 ¼ cups fresh lemon juice
Lemon slices (optional)
Combine 1 cup water, sugar and ginger in a small saucepan; bring to a boil and cook 1 minute, or until sugar dissolves, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; cool. Strain ginger mixture (if you do not want the pulp) into a pitcher. Add 5 cups of water and juice and stir well. Serve over ice and garnish with lemon slices. Serves 8. 

Ginger Chai
Black tea
Cardamom seeds; 2 seeds per cup
Fresh ginger; 1 TSP per cup
Cinnamon (sticks or powder); 1 TSP per cup
Measure milk according to number of cups, and pour into saucepan. Heat milk until a soft boil; add spices and tea; simmer 5 to 10 minutes. When using cardamom seeds, split open before adding. Strain and serve.

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