A secret recipe
You won't find this on most typical Chinese restaurant menus. Generally speaking, at most restaurants, chefs will happily make custom dishes for you if you ask them to, but these are well-kept secrets.
Unlike most of my dad's cooking, I had no idea his Ginger Fried Rice recipe existed until very recently.
The morning after my wife gave birth to our son Cameron, I called my parents to ask if they could make us food. We were still waiting to be discharged by the hospital, and we were craving something other than hospital food.
I returned to the hospital with a giant tupperware container of Ginger Fried Rice. Kat and I devoured all of it within 5 minutes.
Little did I know, my parents had purchased 5 pounds of ginger in excited anticipation for my wife's homecoming and their new grandson. They were ready to make us all kinds of Chinese ginger dishes and soups.
Basically every week since Cam was born, we've eaten Ginger Fried Rice. It's that good.
Ginger, the superfood
In Chinese culture (and many other Asian cultures), it's traditional for the grandparents of newborns to make meals and soups for the mom that are rich in ginger. It's believed to help newborn moms speed up their recovery.
Ginger has been a staple of Chinese and Eastern medicine for thousands of years, with a myriad of health benefits which have started to become validated by scientific research.
Research papers are dense and can be difficult to digest, but here are some key takeaways:
- Arguably, ginger's most famous property across cultures is its anti-nausea effect. As a drug, it'd be called an antiemetic, helpful in combating vomiting and nausea. That's why lots of seasickness and motion-sickness pills have ginger! Or why tourist boats often stock up on ginger tea and ginger ale. Since it's been deemed safe by most health providers as safe for pregnancy, ginger (or ginger fried rice!) is also a great option to consider for those suffering from nausea during pregnancy.
- Ginger is also a great source of anti-oxidants, up there with pomegranates and those berries that your local smoothie shops are fond of calling "superfoods". Antioxidants are vital to protecting your body from DNA damage over time.
- Although it has not been rigorously proven, ginger seems to have anti-inflammatory effects, helpful to relieve pain from headaches and period cramps.
Despite all these great health benefits, please be aware that ginger is a blood thinner! If you have a health condition where you need to consider blood clotting and blood thinners, ginger is probably not an ingredient you want to overdo.
Check out a quick story summary of our recipe!