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G is For Ginger

Vegetables from A to Z

By Hannah Marcotti

I just learned that ginger is mentioned in the Karma Sutra and is known for having aphrodisiac properties. gisforginger-500How could I not feature it in my G article even though it is a rhizome? Ginger is one of those amazing little powerhouse foods that can easily be forgotten as you go through the grocery store. Rhizomes help break up the mucus we accumulate in our bodies during the winter from eating stews and hearty dishes with meat. It is a great digestive aid as a tea, with honey and lemon, or can add delicious flavor to marinades and dressings. It is spicy and alluring in Asian cuisine. It adds a burst of flavor to a salmon marinade with tamari, garlic, lemon and honey. How about for dessert? Well there’s candied ginger, chocolate covered ginger and my new favorite, ginger and mint fruit salad.

I am leading a group of motivated people through a 10 day cleanse. We are not fasting or drinking some strange drink; we are eating really fresh, local whole foods and giving our bodies a break from possible food allergens. Sounds good…but it can be a real challenge, especially in the sweet department. I love chocolate, and on a cleanse, miss it as much as others are missing their morning java. I came up with this simple fruit salad to please the sweet tooth while aiding the body in digestion and cleansing.

Summer provides us with natural sweetness in the form of berries and fruits dripping with sweet juice. I like to keep it simple with fruits. A couple of berries combined or a single melon is perfect. Bananas, pineapple and coconut give you a tropical fruit salad and kiwi with pomegranate seeds make for a beautiful presentation. Look for organic fruit in season and the price will be right.

Ginger and Mint Fruit Salad

1 lb strawberries, washed and quartered
1 pint blackberries, washed
4 mint leaves, cut in a chiffonade (see how-to)
1 TB grated ginger (less if you are not used to the taste)
1 tsp honey or agave

Mix ingredients together gently and refrigerate for 1-4 hours, or over night. Enjoy this as a simple summer dessert or a sweet start to your day. Save the remaining ginger and freeze. You can grate and slice frozen ginger.

Hannah Marcotti is a Holistic Health Counselor who loves creating exciting recipes and inspiring others to get into their kitchens and cook with whole foods. Through her counseling business Hannah’s Harvest, (www.hannahsharvest.com) she hopes to create a ripple effect of health and happiness in Providence and beyond. She shares her musings on life with three children and searching for that next perfect meal on her blog, Hannah’s Harvest Thoughts. (www.hannahs-harvest.blogspot.com)

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