Originally Posted by daisy
Choose young, ripe, firm and non-stringy ginger...
And boy is that important, especially the "non-stringy". Mind you, if you're like me, the ginger you can get is the ginger you can get. You'll be able to get "young, ripe, firm and non-stringy" only if you're lucky.
I've love crystallised ginger but can't get it in Greece and what I've brought back from trips is long gone. So, I've tried making my own. Once. That was enough. It just wasn't even close to the commercial crystallised ginger.
In the U.S. the only crystallised ginger I've found is by Spice Islands, sold, duh, in the spice section. It's very, very nice and it's very, very expensive.
In the U.K. I can find it everywhere -- even from the sweets vendor in the train station! It's bigger and more tender and absolutely delicious.
It's an interesting addition to carrot cake, especially if you use pineapple as well, but my very favorite way to eat crystallised ginger is in chicken salad. Yep, chicken salad.
Diced chicken breast (preferably charcoal-grilled), finely-minced celery, sliced almonds, seedless green grape halves, crystallised ginger, mayonnaise, salt, and lots of cumin and coarsely ground black pepper. Knock-your-socks-off good!!