Crystallized ginger can be the rockstar of any baker's pantry because it's available all year, works in sweet and savory recipes, and is relatively simple to prepare at home. So how best to use it?First thing's first: crystallized ginger (or candied ginger) is essentially fresh ginger that's been slowly cooked in a sugar solution and rolled in coarse sugar to preserve it. It is wonderful chopped very fine and mixed into cake, cookie, and muffin batters but also adds a nice, crisp layer sprinkled on top of morning pastries and afternoon sweets. I also love adding it to some sauces and salad dressings because it adds a simultaneous kick of sweet and spicy — an instant way to perk up tired greens or ho-hum noodles.
Megan is a freelance writer and recipe developer. Her cookbook, Whole-Grain Mornings, will be available in bookstores nationwide Dec/2013. Megan also owns the Seattle-based artisan cereal company, Marge Granola.
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