Not much time for writing this weekend (a head cold isn’t helping), but I wanted to let you know that Brick Farm Market in Hopewell has the most wonderful baby ginger. I bought this small piece (it’s not cheap), and will probably make the Pickled Young Ginger on the Saveur website. I especially love that it needs no peeling.
I’ve found baby ginger at Asian Supermarkets before, and find it impossible to pass it by. In a stir-fry, I treat it more like a vegetable component than an aromatic. Translation: I use a lot of it.
I’ve never tried growing ginger myself, but had good luck several years ago with lemongrass (which is also not inexpensive). I bought a couple stalks in February or March that weren’t trimmed up into the base of the stalk, and (if I remember correctly), rooted them in a glass of water, after cutting the tops off, leaving just a few inches. But it’s key that the base of the stalk is intact. Once the soil was warmed up (early June?), I stuck them in, and in early fall, voila! I had a dense bunch of lemon grass, as the roots had spread and sent up new shoots. I just Googled this, and found good instructions with photos on this nice website, Garden Betty. In her SoCal climate zone (So Jealous!), lemongrass is a perennial shrub, but here, alas, I believe it is just a summer annual…or maybe if you had a nice, sheltered spot near the house….