• The Fantastic Spices World
  • The Fantastic Spices World
  • The Fantastic Spices World
  • The Fantastic Spices World

GREATER GALANGALE ( Alpinia galanga [L.] Willd. )
Names in Other Languages:

English Siamese ginger, Galangale
French Souchet long, Souchet odorant, Galanga
German Galanga, Galgant, Großer Galgant, Siam-Ingwer
Spanish Galang
Italian Galanga, Galanga maggiore
Turkish Havlıcan
Japanese ガランガ Garanga

FAMILY: Zingiberaceae

ORIGIN:   India, Southeast Asia, Laos, it is cultivated in Indochina, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia.


Fresh galangale rhizome

GENERAL DESCRIPTION:

Orange-brown skin with pale yellow or white interior. The rhizomes are longer than lesser galangal and the are available as slices, 3mm thick or powder.

USEFUL PARTS:


Dried galanga rhizome
The roots of galangale contain the flavor. It is built up from cylindrical subunits whose pale-reddish surface is characteristically cross-striped by reddish-brown, small rings. The interior has about the same colour as the skin and is hard and woody in texture.

Galangal leaves are aromatic as well but they are not used for flavouring purposes.

SENSORY PROPERTIES:

Warm, sweet, spicy. Fresh galangale has a distinct fragrance that comes close to fir or pine needles; dried galangale is more spicy and sweet-aromatic.

MAIN CONSTITUENTS:

The rhizome contains up to 1.5% essential oil (1,8 cineol, α-pinene, eugenol, camphor, methyl cinnamate and sesquiterpenes).

In dried galanga, the essential oil has quantitatively different composition than in fresh one. Whereas α-pinene, 1,8-cineol, α-bergamotene, trans-β-farnesene and β-bisabolene seem to contribute to the taste of fresh galanga equally, the dried rhizome shows lesser variety in aroma components (cineol and farnesene, mostly).

The resin causing the pungent taste (formerly called galangol or alpinol) consists of several diarylheptanoids and phenylalkanones. In addition, the rhizome is high in starch. [1]

MAIN USES IN FOOD PROCESSING:

Greater galangale is used in Indonesian dishes such as curries. Galanlage il used in fish recipes often with garlic, ginger, chilli and lemon or tamarind. Galangale has some culinary usage in China.Slices of the dried rhizome may be cooked with vegetable or meat dishes, but the spice is normally used fresh and grated or crushed. Lesser galangale appears in the characteristically spicy-sweet foods of that island.

MEDICINAL PROPERTIES:

Galangal is an aromatic stimulant, carminative and stomachic. It is used against nausea, flatulence, dyspepsia, rheumatism, catarrh and enteritis. It also possesses tonic and antibacterial qualities and is used for these properties in veterinary and homeopathic medicine. It is used as a body deodorizer and halitosis remedy traditionally in India. Galangals have been used in Europe and Asia as an aphrodisiac for centuries.

REFERENCES and SOURCES:

[1]http://www.uni-graz.at/~katzer/engl/Alpi_gal.html

http://www.indianetzone.com/1/galangal.htm

http://www.theepicentre.com/Spices/galangal.html

http://aidanbrooksspices.blogspot.com/2007/10/galangale-lesser.html