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Verdant Kitchen

Local find: Verdant Kitchen’s ginger syrup

Verdant Kitchen’s line of ginger-flavored foods was just beginning to step up from local farmers markets to regional super­markets when Oprah changed everything.

Coming to a market near you: Local ginger

When the warm weather dissipates, farmers begin to fill their market stalls with hardy root vegetables: turnips, rutabagas, sweet potatoes, beets, carrots, winter radishes. But this year, customers can also find an exotic tuber among the local mix: fresh ginger.

Ginger-Garlic Green Beans with Cashews

For a Thanksgiving offering, I sought tips from my Facebook friends on how I might transform ordinary green beans into something extraordinary. I got dozens of great suggestions and decided to devise a composite of some of the best of those ideas.

Strawberry-Ginger Ice Cream

Inspired by a flavor at my favorite ice cream store, Morelli's, this dessert features sweet berries with the subtle kick of fresh ginger. Choose the ripest berries you can find.

Curried Sweet Potato Soup

From "Screen Doors and Sweet Tea" by Martha Hall Foose, Clarkson Potter. I love the way a crisp puffed pork rind (or a scattering of pomegranate seeds) crowns this soup, which elevates the lowly sweet potato.

Smoky Maple Pinto Beans

From "Around the Southern Table" by Sarah Belk. Almost as popular as fried chicken is that universal favorite, barbecue. Wherever one goes, he isn't far from the smell of some restaurant or backyard grill slowly cooking pork, beef, or chicken in a highly seasoned barbecue sauce.

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