(Galanga, Laos, Lengkuas, Kha, Lam Keong)
Galangal or Galanga is the rhizome of a plant which is native to Indonesia. The latin name is the Alpinia Galanga. There are actually four varieties of Galangal, but the differences go beyond the scope of this barbecue website.
Galangal is also known as Java Root, Thai Ginger or Siamese Ginger. In Indonesia it is called Laos, in Malaysia Lengkuas, the Chinese name is Lam Keong, and the Thai name is Kha.
Galangal is sold fresh, frozen or as dry powder. Check your Asian market or toko.
Photo of fresh Galangal root, also named Galanga, Laos, Java Root or Thai Ginger.
Although it looks a bit like Ginger, Galangal has its own specific aroma, a bit soapy, with hints of citrus, pine and black pepper.
Galangal is widely used in Southeast Asian Cuisine, for example in Malaysian and Indonesian Marinades and Sauces, and in Thai Curries and Soups.
Fresh Galangal is peeled and cut (or chopped) like Ginger or Turmeric. Cutting is easier once you have removed the woody parts.
Of course, Galangal is one of the ingredients available in our cabinet of barbeque spices.
Galangal is known to improve the mood and spirit, clear the mind, increase concentration, and act as a stimulant. In some parts of Asia, Galangal mixed with fruit juice is said to be an aphrodasiac.
Some literature suggests that large quantities of Galangal may cause hallucinations...