Always in search of anti-inflammatory foods for wellness and to combat symptoms of gluten-intolerance (bloating, swollen joints, headaches, upset stomach), I discovered the healing benefits of ginger. I learned from my dad way back that ginger helped reduce his migrane headaches. As time went by I learned more and more what a helpful remedy ginger is, long used in traditional Indian and Chinese medicine as a remedy for ailments such as nausea, indigestion, flatulence, flu, diarrhea, motion sickness, and osteoarthritis.
Ginger has been scientifically proven to relieve muscle pain and soreness, and a new study shows that taking daily doses of ginger can ease up to 25 percent of the aches and pains that follow strenuous exercise. The study's lead researcher suggests purchasing ginger capsules that contain a standardized extract with a gingerol content of 5%. Take one two-gram daily dose for several days before and after planned workouts. If you love the taste of ginger, here are kitchen equivalents: a two-gram dose of raw ginger in capsule form is roughly equivalent to one teaspoon of powdered ginger, 1/2 teaspoon of ginger extract, or (my favorite) one tablespoon of finely chopped fresh ginger.
Here's one ginger recipe from my cookbook, Fresh from Elizabeth’s Kitchen, that uses ginger. The flavor and health benefits are fabulous!
Head here for more wholesome recipes using ginger.
Gingerbread Waffles with Pecan or Almond-Agave Butter
1 batch Homemade Pancake Mix (see below) or 1 batch The Pure Pantry Organic Old Fashioned Pancake Mix (available on-line at)
¼ cup blackstrap molasses
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 tablespoon ginger
1 teaspoon vanilla
Pecan or Almond-Agave Butter
½ cup butter
¼ cup raw agave nectar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon powdered ginger
1 tablespoon brown sugar
½ cup finely chopped pecans or blanched almonds, plus more for garnish
Gluten-free Pancakes and Waffle Batter:
11/3 cups Elizabeth’s Gluten-free flour blend (below)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups milk of choice (regular, rice milk or coconut milk)
1egg (or egg replacer)
1 tablespoon safflower oil
1 tablespoon raw agave nectar or honey
1. Prepare batter in large bowl. Add molasses, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, ginger and vanilla. Prepare waffles as indicated by waffle iron manufacturer.
2. Prepare Pecan or Almond-Agave Butter by placing butter, agave, cinnamon, ginger, brown sugar and chopped nuts in small bowl. With a fork, blend together until combined.
3. Place a stack of waffles on a plate. Top with a heaping tablespoon of nut-butter. Drizzle with agave nectar or maple syrup. Add fresh fruit and a dollop of vanilla yogurt if desired.
Elizabeth’s Gluten-free Flour Blend
The perfect base for making gluten-free pancakes, waffles, crepes, cakes, cookies, scones, biscuits and quickbreads.
|Ingredients||4 cups mix||8 cups mix|
|Organic brown rice flour||1 ½ cups||3 cups|
|Organic white rice flour||1 ¼ cups||2 ½ cups|
|Organic sorghum, buckwheat, millet or amaranth*||½ cup||1 cup|
|Organic potato starch flour||½ cup||1 cup|
|Organic tapioca flour||¼ cup||½ cup|
|Xanthan gum||2 teaspoons||1 tablespoon|
Mix all ingredients together and place in air-tight container.
*When choosing which flour combination to use, consider that sorghum will give you the lightest result in baking. Millet and amaranth will give you a heavier result. For cakes and cookies, I recommend using sorghum. For breads, scones, and biscuits, millet or amaranth are good choices.
Elizabeth Kaplan is the founder of The Pure Pantry, an allergen-free natural foods company that creates nutritious, great-tasting, and easy-to-use baking mixes. She is the author of Fresh from Elizabeth’s Kitchen: Gluten-free & Allergy-free Recipes. When she was diagnosed with celiac disease in 2002, and subsequently her children were diagnosed with severe food allergies and gluten intolerance, she focused her passion for the culinary arts on gluten-free cuisine. Elizabeth teaches cooking classes that help others transition to a gluten-free lifestyle, lectures on topics related to gluten intolerance, and writes a lifestyle blog in which she shares recipes, nutrition tips, entertaining and travel ideas, and her first-hand knowledge about raising children with food allergies. Her husband and three children all enjoy being her official taste testers for the recipes and products she creates.