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Ginger

Ginger Root Health Benefits, Ginger Drinks, Fresh Ginger Recipes & More

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Ginger root and ginger tea
Jim Franco/The Image Bank/Getty Images
In cooking, ginger refers to the flavorful, aromatic root of the ginger plant (Zingiber officinale). Ginger is commonly used as an "herbal tea" and included in baked sweets and savory Chinese dishes. In addition to providing a zesty flavor, ginger is thought to offer many health benefits.

Fresh Ginger & Other Types of Ginger Root

Ginger root can be bought and used in many forms, including fresh ginger root, dried ginger root, powdered ginger and crystallized / candied ginger. You can compare the appearances of powdered, crystallized and fresh ginger with this image.

Fresh ginger root tends to provide the most flavor, and is commonly used for ginger "tea" and other ginger drinks, as well as in many Chinese dishes. If you're new to using fresh ginger for cooking, check out these guides to how to select and store fresh ginger root and how to store and use fresh ginger.

You can also freeze fresh ginger to save money and time in the kitchen.

For more information on forms of ginger, check out this handy chart on types of ginger and how to cook with them from About.com Home Cooking. It includes information on fresh ginger root vs. mature ginger root, crystallized / candied ginger, and more.

Ginger Health Benefits

Many people are drawn to ginger not only for its pungent flavor, but also for its health benefits. Historically, ginger has been used for various ailments, and used in particular for gastrointestinal issues. For more information on specific health benefots and medicinal uses of ginger, see that articles linked below: Personally, I like to drink ginger "tea" as a remedy for colds and sore throats.

Ginger "Tea" Recipes

More accurately known as a ginger infusion or ginger decoction, ginger "tea" is one of the most popular ways of consuming ginger for health or for enjoyment. These are some of my favorite recipes for homemade ginger "tea": More Ginger Drink Recipes

Beyond ginger tea, popular ginger drinks include ginger ale, ginger beer, ginger juice and ginger cocktails. Below, you'll find some of the top ginger drink recipes on About.com. Unless otherwise notes, these recipes are made with fresh ginger root.
Sweet Ginger Recipes

From ginger snap cookies to ginger ice cream to ginger simple syrup, there are many ways ginger can be incorporated into sweet foods and sauces. Here are some of the most popular recipes for sweet ginger dishes on About.com: Savory Ginger Recipes

Ginger Beef... Lemon-Ginger Hummus... Carrot-Ginger Soup... While ginger is delicious in sweets, it also shines in traditional and contemporary savory dishes. These ginger recipes from About.com cross cultures and culinary preferences to showcase the unique flavor of ginger: More on Ginger

Ginger is a fascinating herb with a long history and many uses in various cultures. Learn more about ginger with these articles:

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