Pickled Ginger (Sushi Ginger) Recipe | ChefDeHome.com (2024)

Homemade Pickled (Sushi) Ginger recipe. It needs only 5 ingredients to make pickled ginger at home with flavor just like pink ginger served with Sushi in Japanese Restaurants. Even better as home pickled ginger is free of preservatives and dyes. Make once, enjoy whole month! Gluten free, vegan, dairy free.

Sweet, tangy and slightly pink in color, pickled ginger is my favorite ask whenever I eat Sushi or dine in a Japanese Restaurant.In-fact one such Japanese place in Bay Area is my inspiration to share this recipe with you.

Are you ready for a fun weekend project? I also love pickled ginger stir-fried with spicy udon noodles. (hint hint)

Pickled Ginger

Pickled Sushi Ginger, also known as gari/shoga, is a popular Japanese condiment. Specially very commonly served as palate cleanser with Sushi. Whether you buy pre-packed Sushi from Whole Foods or dine in a fancySushi Restaurant, the side of sweet pickled ginger is quintessential.

On contrary to store-bought sushi ginger, homemade pickled ginger is pale-pink in color. The store bought ginger's color is enhanced with dyes where homemade version is pale pink due to natural reaction with rice vinegar.

Pickled Ginger is easy to prepare and often served with noodles, rice and sushi. In-fact, it is used heavily in both Chinese and Japanese cuisine. Along with delicious taste, ginger also believed to aid digestion. In my home, it find ways to salads, noodles, spicy fried rice, and of course sushi.

I love to top every sushi roll with pinch of wasabi, a slice of pickled ginger with a drop of soy sauce. Such a delightful combination of sweet, spicy and umami.Craving Sushi? ;-) Ditto!

Let's make pickled ginger today. I have plans to also share my homemade sushi recipe with you.

Pickled Ginger (Sushi Ginger) Recipe | ChefDeHome.com (1)

What Do You Need To Make Pickled Ginger

Here are the 5 (easy to find) ingredients to make Pickled Ginger at home:

  1. Young Non-Fibrous Ginger
  2. Rice Vinegar
  3. Sugar
  4. Salt
  5. Water

How simple is that?! Right?

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What Ginger To Use for Pickled Ginger?

Buy non-fibrous fresh ginger root. Preferably young ginger. (Also known as baby ginger.) Available in most Asian Stores.It is easy to spot a young ginger root. Simply look at the skin. Skin of young ginger has shades of pink, is opaque, thin and so delicate that you can simply rub it off.

Young Ginger is good for pickling because it has wonderful non-fibrous texture. Once pickled, ginger stays crunchy yet gets so delicate that it melts in mouth.

Young ginger is not that spicy and potent as mature ginger. Also, pickling ingredients i.e. Rice vinegar, salt and sugar, further draw out most heat and spicy-ness out of the young ginger. Resulting pickled ginger is sweet, crunchy and as I said, melts in mouth.

You can also use galangal for this recipe.

TIP:In Autumn season (ginger season) you may also find ginger sold in regular produce stores very fresh, less fibrous and totally fine for this pickle.

Pink Ginger

The natural pink color in pickled ginger is very light pale pink (as you can see in the pictures.) Ginger turns naturally light pink when comes in contact with Vinegar or Rice Wine. It's ok for young ginger to release it's pigments and it is safe to eat.

If you ever wonder how sometime Japanese pickled ginger is red rather than pink? The red color dye is added while pickling ginger to make it look bright pink-red and hence more appetizing. However, you will find pink ginger tastes same as red ginger. There is no difference in flavor.

If you ever get chance to find a Japanese food store. Look for fresh pickled ginger in their refrigerator section. They sell both yellow (light pink like this recipe) and deep pink red gingers called Yellow Gari Shoga and Pink/Red Gari Shoga respectively. I have bought both yellow and red pink ginger and found the flavor to be exactly same.

Pickled Ginger - Recipe Testing

When I planned to test pickled ginger recipe for blog... I tried various ways to make pickled ginger, all with different results. I'm sharing the best, my version of pickling method that convinced me on the flavor of pickle ginger.

There were a few winners in my testing. Picture below shows few good ways to pickle ginger. (No. 2, Sushi Ginger is my version of pickled ginger for this post.)

Pickled Ginger (Sushi Ginger) Recipe | ChefDeHome.com (3)

Quick Pickled Ginger

Picture (first from the top) is quick pickled ginger. It needs no cooking time. Only mix the pickling liquid, add to the sliced ginger and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Resulting pickled ginger is sweet, sour, has good crunch but is also sharp and spicy.

If you are ginger fan, this is the ginger recipe for you. To quick pickle ginger, follow the recipe same as described in the recipe card. Only don't cure ginger and no need to heat the liquid, add straight to the ginger and let sit for 30 minutes.

Quick pickled ginger is good to serve with fried rice, stir-fry with noodles or cook chicken.

Sushi Ginger

Sushi Ginger recipe (second picture from the top) is what I have shared in the recipe card. It needs some extra time as ginger is salted and cured to extract spicy-ness out.

To make sushi ginger, ginger is salted. Salting makes ginger sweat and releases the spicy-ness out. Next, pickling liquid is just heated to point until sugar and salt are fully dissolved (not boiled), then ginger is pickled in the liquid. Let ginger pickle come to room temperature and then refrigerate until ready to use.

You can start munching on pickled ginger once pickle cool down to room temperature. For the chilled (sweeter) sushi ginger like you get in sushi restaurants, refrigerate for at-least 30 minutes.

Note: Once at room temperature, if ginger tastes bit spicy. Don't worry. Let it sit in refrigerator for few hours, it will get better, perfectly sweet and less spicy.

Candied Ginger

This was an experiment gone side ways but made a delicious candied pickled ginger. This recipe requires cooking the fresh sliced ginger with pickling liquid for 30 minutes or until liquid thickens and sugar crystalize like candy. Good to top on salads or serve with meat.

Pickled Ginger (Sushi Ginger) Recipe | ChefDeHome.com (4)

This was a long due recipe. I'm so glad to finally share this with you.

Friends, don't shy from trying new things in the kitchen. This weekend, bring home some young ginger (or check above for my tips to find fresh ginger in local produce store.) I'm sure you will find remaining 4 ingredients in your pantry. Make some pickled ginger and enjoy sweet and sour condiment with your favorite meal. A jar of pickled ginger will keep for 1 month in refrigerator.

Happy Cooking! -Savita x

Pickled Ginger (Sushi Ginger) Recipe | ChefDeHome.com (2024)
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