Start to Finish: 40 minutes plus resting time
Servings: 1 cup crystallized ginger
Crystallized ginger, also known as candied ginger, is fresh ginger preserved in a sweet syrup, then subsequently dried and rolled in sugar to give it a “crystallized” appearance. The candied spice can be eaten as is, but can also be used to flavor chocolates and baked goods, like ginger cookies. Make at home to use up extra ginger and to always have a sweet, spicy treat on hand. This recipe is adapted from David Lebovitz and the kitchn.
- 1 pound fresh ginger root
- 8 cups water plus extra
- 4 cups brown sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 2 cups white sugar
Trim off the small nubs on the ginger root, and cut into 2- to 4-inch long pieces. Peel the ginger using a vegetable peeler or a sharp paring knife.
Slice the ginger into 1/8-inch rounds. Use a mandolin to make paper-thin slices. The ginger can also be cut into 1- to 2-inch long strips, no more than a 1/4-inch thick.
Place the ginger and 2 cups of water in a pot and bring to boil over high heat. Cook for 10 minutes.
Drain the boiled ginger, discarding the water, and fill again with 2 cups of fresh water. Bring the ginger to a boil on high heat, cook on medium heat for 10 minutes, then drain the ginger.
Combine the simmered and drained ginger with the brown sugar, remaining 4 cups of water and the salt. Heat on high heat until the syrup temperature reaches 225 degrees Fahrenheit.
Test the temperature with a candy thermometer. To prevent the temperature from rising about 225 degrees F, turn off the heat when the syrup is 5 to 10 degrees from the target temperature. The temperature will continue to rise because of residual heat from the pot.
Cover the pot and leave it on the stove top, with the ginger submerged in the pot, overnight. Bring the syrup back up to a boil, then drain the ginger, pouring out the syrup.
Spread the white sugar onto a plate, and place the well-drained ginger slices in the sugar. Stir and toss to completely coat the ginger pieces in granulated sugar.
Place the sugared ginger slices on a wire rack to cool and dry overnight. Once fully dried, place the ginger in an airtight container and store at room temperature for up to 3 months.
What Else To Consider
When peeling the ginger, remove only the papery brown skin, leaving as much of the root intact as possible.
Reserve the syrup to use in other dishes, as it will have a mild ginger flavor.
The leftover white sugar can be used to make baked goods or other desserts. It may have a slight ginger taste.
The ginger can also be stored in the syrup it was cooked in. Place in an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to a year.
Add dried spices to the syrup when cooking and resting the ginger to give your crystallized ginger extra flavor. Spices to use include whole cardamom pods, whole cloves and cinnamon sticks.