Sunday, May 22, 2016

MAKE PICKLED GINGER IN JUST A FEW MINUTES

My husband did a fast julienne cut - worked just as well as super thin-sliced.


Do you like pickled ginger - that sweet and sour garnish served alongside sushi at Japanese restaurants? Most of it is made with mature ginger covered by tan, dry skin. The skin is cut off and “pickle cooked”.

Pickled ginger is called gari in Japanese. This kind of garnish punches up many foods and warms our bodies. You can find prepared pickled ginger in pink or white at most Asian markets. It costs more than two dollars for just an ounce or two. I think that's too much and prefer to make my own.

My husband loves ginger and eats as much of it as he can.  He likes it in many forms – as tea, glazed sugar candy, and in all sorts of sweets. But most of all, he likes it pickled it, Japanese style, as sushi ginger. He swears that his good health is a direct result of eating a lot of ginger - along with green tea and garlic.

Did you know that an all-natural version of gari is easy to make  at home?

Since today we're having at-home sushi Sunday, I’m making some right now. My husband is the official veggie cutter  - for ginger and for the sushi veggies. So, I think it’s a good time to share my gari  recipe.  When you see how quick and easy it is to make and how fresh and clean it tastes, you may never go back to the store-bought stuff.

Instructions

Preparation Time: 10 to 15 minutes. Wait another couple of hours before eating.

- 1/3 pound fresh ginger root, peeled and sliced very thin against the fiber (The best pickles are made from the firmest ginger.)
- 1 teaspoons kosher or sea salt
- 1/4 to 1/3 cup sugar, depending on how sweet you like it
- 1/4 cup distilled rice vinegar (If you like, you can use cider vinegar or white wine vinegar instead.)

1) Use an inverted spoon or small paring knife to scrape off the brown skin on the ginger. Then take a very sharp knife to cut the ginger across the grain into super thin pieces.

2) Sprinkle the ginger with the salt and toss thoroughly. Let the ginger sit for 15 minutes. This helps the ginger absorb salt flavor and retain its texture.

3) While the ginger's sitting, combine the sugar and vinegar in a sauce pan. Boil it just briefly and stir until sugar is completely dissolved.

4) After 15 minutes, add the vinegar solution to the ginger and stir it well.

5) Put the ginger and vinegar solution in a small glass jar.

6) Let the ginger sit in the jar for an additional two hours before eating. You'll have a zippy and crunchy pickled ginger. Get ready to enjoy it with sushi. (My husband eats it with just about any kind of food.)

Leftovers can keep in the fridge for a couple of weeks. And don’t throw away the pickling brine. It can be eaten as a spicy dressing for rice or veggies.

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