Fresh, young ginger root does not have to be peeled. It is quite moist, and it's milder and less fibrous than mature ginger. Chef Greg Haley fries thin slices of it to garnish the grilled chicken thighs with roasted cauliflower and a carrot reduction that he serves at Amuse, the restaurant at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond; he says the crisps are also great on their own as a snack or with a ginger-inspired cocktail.
The ginger is available at the Next Step Produce organic stand at the Dupont Circle FreshFarm Market on Sundays until the end of October.
It's best to have a digital thermometer on hand for this recipe; you want the oil at the right temperature to avoid burning the ginger.
Servings: 2 - 3
- 3/4 to 1 cup peanut oil
- 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 ounces fresh young ginger root, rinsed well (see headnote)
- Fine sea salt or turbinado sugar, for sprinkling (optional)
Heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat (there should be 3/4 to 1 inch of oil) to a temperature of 350 degrees, adjusting the heat as needed.
Meanwhile, cut the ginger on a slight diagonal (to make larger slices than coin-size) into 1/8- to 1/4-inch slices. Place a wire cooling rack on top of several layers of paper towels.
Working in 3 or 4 batches, carefully add the ginger slices to the oil; because the ginger has so much moisture, it should start sizzling immediately. Cook for about 1 minute, until lightly browned (more on the edges). Use a slotted spatula to transfer the slices to the wire rack. If desired, sprinkle immediately with the sea salt or turbinado sugar. Repeat to use all of the ginger. Serve right away.
Adapted from Haley, chef de cuisine at Amuse restaurant in the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond.
Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.
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