I like crystallised ginger, and today I saw some good-looking root-ginger on sale @ 40p per pound. I figured all I really needed was some sugar, and I could turn a big root into tasty-sweet & spicy-lumps. This turned out to be correct.
Some claim that ginger is a remedy for nausea, motion sickness, morning sickness and general stomach upset. I don't, but I like the taste.
Step 1: Ingredients & Tools
Fresh root ginger ~1.5 LB (61p)
White refined cane sugar - ~3 LB (most can be recovered)
Step 2: Preparation
Choose the freshest, firmest and cleanest ginger that you can find. If it looks old or wrinkly it's not going to be good.
Peel the golden skin from the ginger-root, also cut off any "woody" bits, green, black or otherwise not-nice-looking parts.
Cut into fairly large-chunks slicing across the "grain" where possible.
If you think it necessary rinse the chunks under a tap to remove loose flakes of skin & peelings.
Put the chunks into a clean saucepan.
Step 3: Cooking
I added ~ 1 LB of sugar and enough water to "cover" the ginger (it has a tendency to float).
The sugar & ginger were brought to the boil and simmered gently until the lumps looked translucent, i.e. no longer white-ish and opaque. This took ~ 3 hours, during which time the chunks shrank and the sugar syrup reduced to ~ half the volume. The sugar syrup was not cooked to the point of caramellisation.
The syrup was separated with a sieve and kept for future use (home-brew)
Step 4: Finishing
The drained pieces were tipped into fresh sugar while still hot.
More sugar was added and the pieces stirred, then some more sugar sprinkled on top and the whole batch left to cool.
After ~ 30 min the pieces were picked-out and the excess sugar returned to the bag for future use (home-brew)
Tastes like it should, but somewhat fresher and more potent.
I'm not sure about the cost of this, but I reckon 99p per LB? (energy & labour excepted), as compared to retail ~4 pounds stlg (?)
!Bonus - I got ~500ml of ginger-syrup out of this