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Ginger is the pungent, aromatic root of the Zingiber officinale, a member of the lily family. It's available year-round at virtually all supermarkets. Choose a large, fat, smooth-skinned knob of ginger.
Hawaiian is the best.
Use a natural bristle vegetable brush to wash the ginger. Peeling isn't necessary if you're going to use it within the next couple of weeks. Simply store it uncovered in the vegetable bin of your refrigerator.
If you're going to keep the ginger for up to a few months, peel it.
Place whole or in large chunks in a glass jar and pour in enough medium-dry sherry to cover the ginger. Store at room temperature.
Each time you use the ginger and sherry in a recipe that calls for both, use the sherry from the storage jar, then replace it with fresh sherry. Keep enough in the jar to cover the ginger.
Pickling is another way to store ginger. It removes some of its bite, making it ideal for recipes that don't require cooking. Pickled ginger is also wonderful in dipping sauces.
Ginger is a strong spice. Cut it very fine so that the flavor will be evenly distributed throughout a dish. Here's the best way to cut ginger:
: 1. Slice ginger thinly on the diagonal (with the grain).
: 2. Place a few slices of ginger on top of each other. Cut them : into narrow julienne strips, then mince.
The Occasional Vegetarian by Karen Lee ISBN 0-446-51792-5 pg 45 Submitted By DIANE LAZARUS On 10-05-95