Firstly, focus on the appearance of the ginger root. Fresh ginger should have smooth, taut skin. Wrinkled or loose skin is often a sign that the ginger has started to dry out and may no longer be fresh.
Ginger root is naturally knobby and uneven. However, it should not have excessively rough or shriveled parts, and there should be no visible mold or discoloration. The color should be a light, tan shade - if it’s too dark, it might be old.
Fresh ginger is firm to the touch. Try pressing the surface of the ginger with your thumb. If it feels soft or mushy, that's a tell-tale sign that the ginger is past its prime.
Fresh ginger is known for its distinctive, spicy aroma. When choosing ginger, take a moment to smell it. It should emit a fresh and pungent scent. If it lacks aroma, it might not have much flavor either.
4. Size of the 'Hands'
Ginger roots branch out into pieces known as "hands". When shopping, choose hands that are thick and full for the most flesh. Smaller hands tend to have more skin relative to their size, and you'll end up with less ginger after peeling.
5. Organic vs. Non-Organic
Consider buying organic ginger if you plan on consuming the skin or making ginger-infused oils. Organic ginger is grown without synthetic pesticides and fertilizers which could reside in the skin. Did you know that GingerDog products are made with organic ginger? They can also save you time, as there's no need to wash, peel, or cut anything. All you need to do is open the bottle and drink. 😌
6. Store Presentation
Lastly, consider where and how the ginger is displayed in the store. It should be in a cool and dry area. Excessive moisture can cause ginger to mold, while too much heat can cause it to dry out and lose flavor.
In conclusion, choosing fresh, high-quality ginger can make a world of difference in your culinary creations. By paying attention to the appearance, firmness, aroma, size of the hands, and whether it's organic, you're sure to select the best ginger root for your needs. Happy ginger shopping!