Fresh Ginger Vs. Ground Ginger: SPICEography Showdown

Fresh Ginger Vs Ground Ginger

Both dried and fresh ginger come from the underground stem of the ginger plant (Zingiber officinale) which is a part of the Zingiberaceae family. This means that the ginger plant is related to other spices like turmeric and cardamom. Ginger is a popular spice used to flavor beverages like ginger ale and ginger beer and is an important ingredient in a variety of Asian cuisines as well. It is used in dishes from the Caribbean, Africa and Europe. It is from China but spread throughout the world on the spice routes that existed as early as the first century.

The forms of ginger that are most familiar to Americans are the fresh form which involves peeling and chopping or grating the ginger, and the dried and ground form. This week on SPICEography Showdown, let’s take a look at how these two forms compare to each other and how to choose which one to use.

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Ceylon Vs. Cassia Cinnamon: SPICEography Showdown

Cassia vs Ceylon Cinnamon

There are hundreds of different cinnamon varieties but only a few are widely sold and the most common of those are Cassia and Ceylon cinnamon. Cassia cinnamon is the type that is most commonly used in North America and most of it comes from Indonesia. It is popular because of its low cost. It is relatively inexpensive because it does not require the labor intensive processing needed for Ceylon cinnamon. Both types of cinnamon trees are related to each other and are distant relatives of the bay tree.

So what are the differences between these two cinnamon varieties? Is one better for some uses than the other? Below we look at how these two spices differ and how you can use them to flavor your dishes in another SPICEography Showdown.

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