Ginger is grown on tropical regions, mostly on hills and mountainsides. The plant can be up to 90 cm tall, with up to 20 cm long leaves. But if that is how it looks above ground, what is actually used in the kitchen are its roots, which need to be unearthed 6 months after being planted. After washing the dirt away and letting it dry for several days, it can be stored for months. Traditionally, it has been used as a remedy for the common cold and the flu. When cooking, it can take part in sweet or salty dishes, almost always ground first and then sprinkled and mixed with other ingredients.
Perfect for teatime, these biscuits are very easy to make. After beating 250 gr (1 cup) butter and 200 gr (1 cup) sugar together, add 170 gr (1/2 cup) honey and an egg. Add the dry ingredients to make the dough: 650 gr (5 cups) all purpose flour, 8 gr (2 tsp) baking powder, 5 gr (2 tsp) cocoa, 5 gr (2 tsp) ginger and 2 gr (1/4 tsp) clove. Mix until the dough is tender but not too sticky and stretch it with your rolling pin. You can then use moulds to cut out the biscuits in the shape you like the most. Spread a thin layer of butter on a baking tray, sprinkle flour on it, place the biscuits and bake for 15 minutes at 180 degrees C (350 degrees F).
Broccoli with ginger and Béchamel sauce
Steam the broccoli until you can drive a fork through it without much resistance. Then, sauté it on a frying pan, along with a chopped scallion, a chopped onion and powdered ginger to taste. Set aside. Prepare the Béchamel sauce, mix the sautéed vegetables in and serve hot.
Gingerbread is equally good for teatime or breakfast. Mix 210 gr (1 1/2 cups) flour in a bowl with ground or powdered ginger to taste, 4 grams (1/2 teaspoon) baking powder, a pinch of salt and cinnamon. Make a hole in this mound of dry ingredients and pour two eggs and half a cube of yeast, previously dissolved in half a cup of lukewarm water, and a squirt of cooking oil. If the dough is not firm enough, just add flour. Knead the dough and, as soon as it gets a homogeneous consistence, put it on the counter-top or table and keep kneading. The dough should be soft. Let it leaven until it doubles in size and then put it into a 180 degree C (350 degrees F) preheated oven.
Lentil salad with cheese and ginger
Boil 100 gr (1/2 cup) dry lentils. They should be enough for three servings of this salad. Then sauté two chopped cloves of garlic in cooking oil, add the lentils and sprinkle with ground ginger to taste. Remove from the stove and add little cubes of soft cheese and leaves of basil. Add salt, olive oil and vinegar to taste.
Sweet ginger cream
Ginger cream is used in the most varied ways: it can be poured on brownies or cakes and even in bitter-sweet dishes. It's very simple to make. Heat up 250 gr of cream and once it is warm, add two egg yolks, 20 gr (1/4 cup) sugar and 4 gr (1 tsp) powdered ginger. Keep stirring until it thickens. Once it is thick enough, let it cool before serving.
Ginger steeped chicken sandwich
Cook a piece of chicken breast. Then mix the ginger marinade: lemon, honey and powdered ginger. Once ready, let the chicken breasts macerate in it for a few hours. Then you can cut the chicken in slices and put the meat into a sandwich. The chicken should have acquired some of the ginger's taste and be juicier than usual.
Orange and ginger juice
This easy to make fruit juice is great for hot days, and once you have tried it, you won't ever forget it. To make it, just mix two parts freshly squeezed orange juice with one part mineral water and sugar to taste. Grind fresh ginger on top, add ice and you'll be ready to enjoy one of the most refreshing drinks ever.
Pumpkin cream and ginger soup
In winter, this recipe will keep you warm, and it is very good if your nursing a cold. You'll need pumpkin of any kind, purée it and mix it well with about 125 gr (1/2 cup) cream. In a pot, on the stove, add as much vegetable stock as needed to bring the soup to your preferred thickness. It should be served hot and ginger powder should be ground fresh on it. Keep in mind: if you sprinkle ginger on the soup and then store it in the refrigerator, the taste of ginger will increase considerably.
Cupcakes with raisins and ginger
In a bowl, mix two eggs with 150 gr (1/2 cup) sugar. Pour 10 ml (1 tablespoon) cooking oil, lemon zest and ground ginger to taste and milk. Beat well. Add all purpose flour and two teaspoons of baking powder and keep beating. If the dough gets too thick, add milk. Add a handful of raisins and pour the mixture into the baking tray. These cupcakes should be baked from 40 minutes to an hour.
Carrot and ginger jam
Carrots and ginger go together like bread and butter. To make this jam, you should chop 1/2 kilo (17 oz.) carrots in fine slices and then boil them in a pot with a bit of cinnamon. Once they are tender, put them through the blender and then back into the pot. Squeeze a lemon and an orange and pour their juice in the mixture, along with a 6 gr (1 tsp) powdered ginger and 200 gr (1 cup) brown sugar. Put the stove on low heat and let the mixture on until it thickens. After letting it cool, you can start spreading it on whatever you wish, or put it in jars and in the refrigerator.
Ginger and lemon tea
Even though it is well know for its medicinal properties, you can drink ginger and lemon tea as many times as you like and it is especially good on cold days. You can make it yourself by boiling freshly ground ginger together with a slice of lemon. Once it boiled for a couple of minutes, let it cool for about half an hour. Then put it through a strainer. It tastes even better if you add honey last.
Ginger yoghurt sauce
Here's a variation on this common sauce to add to your dishes, it works particularly well on sweet-sour recipes and you don't even need to use the stove to make it. You'll need some natural yoghurt, to which you'll add a 20 gr (1 tbsp) honey, 30 ml (2 tbsp) olive oil, chopped parsley, 20 gr (1 tbsp) mayonnaise and 15 gr (1 tbsp) freshly ground ginger. If you want to make it thicker, you can go ahead and add 20 gr (1 tbsp) cornstarch to the mix. This sauce can be used on salads, pasta and evenas a dip.
Apple ginger pie
If there's a type of fruit that goes well with ginger, it is the apple. When taking your regular apple pie out of the oven, you can go ahead and substitute cinnamon for ginger, or pour the sweet ginger cream we described on slide 5 on it. You'll be delighted with the change in taste.
Chicken with avocado and ginger
Another option for hot days is this chicken dish. Cut chicken breast in cubes, cook it as you prefer and mix with pieces of avocado. Use ginger powder as seasoning, with a bit of lemon, salt and also mayonnaise, if that's your thing. You can turn this into an actual salad by adding tomato and lettuce or any other type of fresh, leafy green.
Ginger and honey lemonade
This one is similar to the lemon and ginger tea we showed you on a previous slide, but is better suited for the summer. You can make it by mixing lemon or lime juice with mineral water, a spoonful of honey and ginger to taste.