Nonstick cooking spray
1 1/4 pounds fresh ginger root
5 cups water
Approximately 10 fl. oz. granulated sugar
Spray a cooling rack with nonstick spray and set it in a half sheet pan lined with parchment paper.
Peel the ginger root and slice into 1/4-inch thick slices using a knife.
Place into a 4-quart saucepan with the water and set over medium-high heat.
Cover and cook for 35 minutes or until the ginger is tender. Transfer the ginger to a colander to drain, reserving 1/4 cup of the cooking liquid.
Return the ginger and the 1/4 cup reserved liqiud to the pan and add the sugar. Set over medium-high heat and bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Reduce the heat to medium and cook, stirring frequently, until the sugar syrup looks dry, has almost evaporated and begins to crystallize, the ginger will look translucent approximately 20 minutes.
Transfer the ginger immediately to the cooling rack and spread to separate the individual pieces. Once completely cool, store in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks. Save the sugar that drops beneath the cooling rack and use to top ginger snaps, sprinkled over ice cream or to sweeten coffee.
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. grated orange zest
2-1/2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup Crystallized ginger, coarsely chopped
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Place the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl and beat until light. Beat in the eggs, vanilla and orange zest.
Combine the flour, baking powder, salt and ginger in another bowl.
Stir into the wet mixture until just combined. Shape the dough into a ball, and then cut into two. Knead and shape each half on a lightly floured surface into smooth logs, each about a foot long and 2-1/2 inches wide.
Place the logs, spacing several inches apart, on a non-stick or parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake 20 minutes, or until a light golden brown.
Cool on baking rack 10 minutes. Carefully move the logs to a cutting board and, with a serrated knife, slice, at a slight angle, into 1/2-inch slices. Stand the slices upright on the baking sheet. Return to oven and bake 10 minutes.
Cool to room temperature, then store in a tight-sealing container.