Ginger is a perennial herbaceous plant whose fresh or dried roots are used . Native to East Asia, it contains essential oil, gingerin, zingerone, resins and mucilage, which give the root its medicinal properties. India is the largest producer, it alone supplies more than 35% of world production and the speed of transport today means that it can also be found fresh in our markets, where it can be found naturally, with its external cuticle, and then it is called gray ginger, or the rhizome is peeled and marketed as white ginger. Today ginger is also used in cooking in Europe, in modern recipes suited to our taste due to its pungent aroma and delicious, slightly spicy flavour, such as in the preparation of soups, vegetables, candied fruit, jams and flavored teas. Ginger pairs very well with meat, poultry, shellfish, fish and game ; it is also widely used to prepare cakes, biscuits and dry desserts in general and is used to flavor drinks, sauces and creams . It is also used in the manufacture of liqueurs, syrups and beer and is an ingredient in curry. In addition to flavoring dishes, ginger makes them more digestible for our body.
Benefits of ginger
Ginger is composed of approximately 78% water, 16% carbohydrates, 2% proteins, 1.6% sugars, 2% dietary fiber and ash. Contains calcium, phosphorus, sodium, potassium, magnesium, iron, manganese, zinc, copper and numerous vitamins of groups B, C and E. Flavoring, digestive, antirheumatic, eliminates intestinal gas and relieves toothaches and headaches. It counteracts the formation of free radicals, has revitalizing and energizing properties and supports microcirculation, bringing oxygen and important nutrients to the cells of the epidermis. It is also very useful in case of skin inflammation, promoting the purification and elimination of toxins . It also has antioxidant qualities and anti-tumor properties, specifically it has a protective function against colorectal tumors. Last but not least, the aphrodisiac property of this spice: already the ancient Arabs, but also the Aztecs and the Chinese, used ginger to cure love pain and reawaken desire.
How to store ginger
Consuming fresh ginger is certainly the best thing , as it has the characteristic of losing its special pungent aroma during the grinding process and over time. The fresh root can therefore be stored wrapped in a food-grade bag and placed in the refrigerator; in this way its properties will be preserved for 2-3 weeks.
Dry or powdered ginger, as effective as fresh ginger but with less flavor, must instead be stored in airtight containers and possibly in a cool, dark and dry place.