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Fresh Ginger root vs powdered ginger

I have a recipe that calls for half a teaspoon of freshly grated ginger root. It doesn't make sense to buy a piece just for that much. How much powdered giner would that translate too? Thanks!

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  1. A good rule of thumb is double the fresh form for the dried, so in this case it would be about 1/4 teaspoon of dried

    1. It's really a totally different taste. You can buy a small piece of ginger root, and freeze what you don't use. You can use the root right out of the freezer - don't need to defrost. If you have a microplane (grater that is really a hardware store rasp), you don't even need to peel the root before you use it.

      5 Replies
      1. re: mrsdebdav

        Right. Fresh ginger and powdered ginger are not interchangeable. Neither are fresh ginger and crystallized ginger, as I found out many years ago.

        1. re: Ruth Lafler

          Thanks! I didn't realize you can freeze fresh ginger. I always end up just throwing away the leftover piece. Will buy fresh and freeze from now on!!! Thanks all!

          1. re: javaandjazz

            Fresh ginger is relatively inexpensive, and vastly superior to that dried stuff our moms had in the spice rack. I disagree with freezing it, however. It becomes tough and stringy. I buy it fresh when I know I am going to use it, and chop up what I dont use with a mini-prep/food processor. Pour either olive oil or a nice dry sherry (or vinegar, if you like things a little bit pickled) over it and stash it in a small container in the fridge.

            1. re: Cheflambo

              I come from a Chinese family, lots of fresh ginger is used, but even more of it is frozen. Generally, you aren't eating the ginger, itself (just using it to flavor) so any toughness that develops is negligible. If you are eating it, it usually calls for grated or very thinly julienned ginger, which again, is simple enough to eat. Freezing is the way to go.

            2. re: javaandjazz

              javaandjazz, make sure to rustle through the ginger bin well at the store. You can almost ALWAYS find a piece the size of your thumb. It costs practically nothing.

        2. I also store ginger in sherry. I take the whole piece, peel it and and place in a glass jar covered in sherry. it keeps in the refrig. forever.

          2 Replies
          1. re: beanodc

            does Harvey's Bristol Cream qualify as sherry?

            1. re: javaandjazz

              I store ginger in sherry as well and use an inexpensive dry sherry.

          2. I keep a tube of this stuff on hand in the fridge.

            I think powdered ginger has a different flavor, and a lot of times the fresh ginger at my local grocery isn't very fresh. I buy it at Uwajimaya, an asian market in Seattle, but I think I've also seen it in in the asian section in regular grocery stores.

            1. I break off a piece of the "hand" of ginger...just like taking one stick of butter - it's ok to do, but not too many people know that!

              1 Reply
              1. re: harryharry

                Same here - I just break off what I need and pay for that. Since it's sold by weight anyway, I don't feel guilty doing it.

              2. Like the posters above me, I just break off a finger and buy that. I usually store it in a crock in a dark cabinet with my garlic. It lasts a couple weeks that way, and I just cut off and discard the end bit that has 'cured'. But I do remember a radio interview with Nina Simonds (A Spoonful of Ginger, Spices of Life) who recommended storing ginger in a pot of sand.

                1. my grocery store has frozen grated ginger - as well as other 'fresh frozen' herbs like parsley, cilantro, dill, etc. you may want to check your frozen section next time! i keep those handy in my freezer. much better than the dried no-flavor stuff.

                  1. Totally agreed that there's no substitute for fresh ginger, but the powdered China #1 ginger at Prenzey's in Grand Central was a welcome surprise when I was out of the real deal. Re: storing fresh ginger, I read that after testing numerous methods, a particular test kitchen had the best results with storing it peeled in vodka...lasted longer than sherry. But easiest of all, which I haven't tested yet (plan to this time around) is laying it on the soil of a potted plant, or in a bowl of sand.