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What is Ginger Paste?

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  • Written By: Janis Adams
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 12 November 2016
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Ginger paste is an aromatic ingredient used in many types of cooking. It can be store bought or made at home. It is a very basic ingredient and can contain simply ginger root ground to a fine paste or include many other flavorings and additives used to enhance the taste and the texture of the paste.

The simplest ginger paste is made by combining ginger and water. First the ginger must be peeled and coarsely chopped. Then it must be pulverized in a food processing machine. This step can also be achieved on the puree setting of a blender. During this process, very small amounts of water are added to make the resultant paste spreadable and more easily adaptable as an ingredient for recipes and as a rub for meats. Some recipes call for the addition of a slight amount of oil as the paste is being made. It is is not suggested that the oil be added after the paste is made, as the two will separate.

Ginger paste can be used as a rub or as a marinade. It can be used on red meat as well as white meat, but is most popular as a rub or marinade for all types of fish. As a rub or marinade for meat, poultry, or seafood, it not only serves as a flavor enhancer, but it also serves to tenderize the meat.

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Often garlic is added to ginger paste. These two taste traits create a strong flavor combination, especially when they are fresh and not store bought, ground and mixed prior to purchase. The two combined together are a popular combination in Indian and Asian cuisine.

Sugar can also be added to ginger paste. When sugar is added, it's called sweet ginger paste. Candied ginger is popular throughout the world, so this flavor combination is well recognized. This being so, a sweetened variety of the traditional paste is often a popular choice for those meats and dishes that are on the lighter side. Sweet ginger is often used with fish and pork.

As a homemade ingredient, the paste can last up to five days when refrigerated. Though ginger acts as a food preservative, once ginger has other ingredients added to it, the life of the paste is shortened when compared to that of the pure ginger root. Made from the root, this paste, used as a condiment or to enhance meat, poultry, or fish is a well-known flavoring throughout the world.

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