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Ginger, with its warm and zesty flavor, has been a staple in kitchens worldwide for centuries. Packed with health benefits and culinary versatility; this humble root deserves a place in every pantry. Ginger is known for its anti-inflammatory properties and ability to alleviate nausea, ginger is also a potent flavor enhancer.
I used to keep a ginger root in my freezer for occasional use. But out of sight, out of mind. It dries out and gets lost in the shuffle as various meals come and go from the freezer. ‘Home Cooking Natalie’ was never as ambitious with ginger as ‘Grocery Shopping Natalie’. One fantastic way to ensure a steady supply of ginger is by grinding and dehydrating it for future use. Once I started this simple yet rewarding process I mentally wanted to use my home ground ginger in more ways.
For optimal results, start with fresh and high-quality ginger roots. Look for pieces that are firm, plump, and free from wrinkles. Young ginger tends to be less fibrous and milder in flavor, making it an excellent choice for grinding and dehydrating.
The first step in preserving ginger is to grind in the food processor. You can peel your ginger but it isn’t necessary. Cut the ginger into small chunks to facilitate the grinding process. Drop them in slowly or only grind a few chunks at a time.
Next, spread the freshly ground or shredded ginger evenly on a dehydrator tray. Set the dehydrator to a low temperature (around 115°F or 46°C) to gently remove moisture without compromising the spice's essential oils.
If a dehydrator is unavailable, an oven can serve as an alternative. Place the ginger on a parchment-lined baking sheet and set the oven to its lowest temperature. Keep the oven door slightly ajar to allow moisture to escape. In the dehydrator it will take at least 12 hours, for me it was closer to 18 hours. Make sure it is all dry to the touch. If not completely dry, spread it out and put back in the dehydrator.
Once the ginger has been ground and dehydrated, I place it back in the food processor (now clean and dry) to powder it all. If any pieces don’t break down, sift or pick them out. A huge chunk is delicious but might be too strong of flavor for some. Store it in airtight containers in a cool, dark place. Mason jars or sealed spice containers work well to maintain the spice's potency. Properly stored, your ground and dehydrated ginger can last for up to a year, ensuring you have a readily available supply for a variety of dishes.
Grinding and dehydrating ginger not only provides convenience but also unlocks a world of possibilities in the kitchen. From enhancing the flavor of savory stews to adding a kick to sweet treats, your homemade ginger powder will become an indispensable ingredient. So, embark on this simple preservation journey and savor the vibrant, warming notes of ginger in your future culinary adventures. Your taste buds will thank you.
Welcome to Natalie's fun-sized farm blog. Get ready to embark on a farming adventure, one quick read at a time. In this bite-sized format we'll till the soil of knowledge and harvest insights for both new and seasoned farmers, homesteaders, and simple life enthusiasts alike. Life is short to make all the mistakes yourself or read a chapter book just to get a decent recipe. I post brief blogs now and then to share concise insights into the heart and soul of modern farming, back to basics nutrition and cooking, and the joy of working the soil.