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What's an efficient way to peel ginger?

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There's nothing like peeling a pound of ginger root to make one wonder if there's a better way to deal with all the branches and knobby bits. I normally peel ginger with a paring knife; for larger "knobs" I break them off to make peeling easier, and for smaller ones I cut down on each side and sort of dig the peel out from between them.

picture of ginger root

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The approach I described works fine if I need enough minced ginger for a stir-fry for two people -- it doesn't matter if the pieces that get cut off are small because they're getting chopped up anyway. But I was making candied ginger, so I wanted slices not minced ginger. It seems like my choices were to spend a lot of time fussing or to waste the smaller pieces.

Is there another way to peel ginger, with all its irregularities, that's faster or less wasteful or both?

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There are actually good reasons not to peel ginger at all. The most important one is that, like with apples, most of the vitamins are right beneath the skin and peeling it essentially removes these. You can read more about it here: https://www.purewow.com/food/do-you-have-to-peel-ginger Zerotime‭ 22 days ago

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As I pointed out in my comment, it's better to not peel ginger at all. Most of the vitamins of ginger are located right beneath the skin and peeling it essentially removes this thin layer of vitamins together with the skin. In regard to taste, it usually makes no difference to peel or to not peel it as the skin is very thin and becomes unnoticeable when cooked.

However, it's important to differentiate here between organic and conventional cultivation. The first one generally uses no pesticides so it's safe to eat the ginger as it is, just give it a small bath and a scrub. Conventionally cultivated ginger usually is exposed to (small) amounts of pesticides, here you should peel the ginger.

So in order to peel ginger and reduce the risk of hurting yourself, it's best to waive knives and peeler because ginger is very small and irregular. There's a high probability to cut yourself with these tools. Instead of that, you should use a spoon.

peeling ginger with a spoon

The thin skin makes it easy to scratch it right off the ginger. Using a spoon removes the risk of cutting yourself and helps to not cut to deep in the ginger to keep as many vitamins as possible. For an even faster process, cut the ginger in pieces you can easily hold.

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