I Love Ginger

Ginger is a wonderful thing. Google “benefits of ginger” and you’ll find that it has many supposed health benefits, from fighting nausea to preventing colds. I’ve found that a tablespoon or so of fresh, grated ginger steeped in hot water for about ten minutes makes a potent tea that helps relieve indigestion and other stomach issues.

On my way back from Washington, DC earlier this year I stayed with a college friend who lives in southeastern Minnesota. While I was there I had some delicious candied ginger, and decided that I would make some of my own in the near future. I recently bought 2 pounds or so of ginger, and decided to use half for the candied ginger and the rest for something else. So, today you’re getting two recipes, one for candied ginger and one for chicken with noodles and vegetables in ginger broth. 

Candied Ginger and Syrup

Ingredients

  • 1 cup fresh ginger
  • 6 cups water
  • 6 cups sugar

Instructions

  1. Peel the ginger and cut into 1/2 to 3/4 inch chunks.
  2. Mix sugar and water in large saucepan and bring to a boil.
  3. When sugar is dissolved, add ginger and boil gently for about an hour and a half or until ginger is sweet and tender.
  4. Drain ginger and reserve liquid.
  5. Let ginger cool on drying rack for at least 30 minutes.
  6. Coat ginger with sugar and let dry on wax paper. Feel free to coat with additional sugar if, after time, the ginger has absorbed some of it. Store in airtight container.
  7. Boil reserved liquid until reduced to a syrup with consistency between maple syrup and honey. Sugar may begin to crystallize; add a little water and bring to a boil if it does. Let cool and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Syrup can be used as a substitute for lots of other syrups and sweeteners.

Note: You can use less water and sugar and cut the cooking time in half by thinly slicing the ginger. I used sliced ginger the first time I tried this recipe and was not satisfied with the results. If you do decide to go that route, boil the ginger gently and keep an eye on it.

Source: Adapted from Food.com

Chicken with Noodles and Vegetables in Ginger Broth 

Ingredients

  • 4 oz rice noodles (super easy to make – can make more depending on taste)
  • 3 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 3 tbsp honey
  • 5 quarter-size slices of peeled fresh ginger
  • 4 star anise pods
  • 4 skinless boneless chicken breasts, thinly sliced
  • 2 medium yellow squash, halved lengthwise and sliced
  • 6 oz snow peas, trimmed and halved
  • 4 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 2 stalks celery, thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

Instructions

  1. Cook the rice noodles according to package directions; drain and set aside.
  2. Combine the chicken broth, soy sauce, honey, ginger, and star anise in a large skillet; bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the chicken and return the mixture to a simmer. Simmer, covered, for 10 minutes.
  4. Add vegetables and cook for about 5 more minutes.
  5. Remove and discard the ginger and star anise
  6. Grab the rice noodles you set aside earlier and divide them among however many bowls you’ll be serving. Top with chicken/vegetable/broth mixture and sprinkle with cilantro, if desired.

I’m a huge fan of the ginger broth in this recipe, and will definitely be making and using it again.

Source: Slightly adapted from  Healthy Cooking Basics