Ken Boddie

8 months ago · 5 min. reading time · visibility ~100 ·

chat Contact the author

thumb_up Relevant message Comment

A Day Out with Ginger

A Day Out with Ginger

No, I’m not talking about Nicole Kidman, Ginger Rogers, old US mate with the dead ginger cat as a coiffure, or a host of auburn hair coloured, pale skinned and freckled, lovely people, who we Aussies delight in teasingly referring as ‘rangas’ (after the orang-utang). I'm talking about the root of the plant that many of us are only aware of when we quench our thirst with a traditional fizzy brown bevy of bottled ginger ale.  But there are also countless varieties of well prepared meals, snacks and drinks, all containing ginger, either as a major 'kick' ingredient or as a more subtle tingle to the tongue.

Ginger has been in my diet for many years now, and so, with the historic Ginger Factory at Buderim only a mere hour and a half's drive north of 'Brissy' (and on my list of local attractions not yet visited in our almost 20 years residency in the region), we packed our 'sunnies', water bottles and 50+ sunscreen for a Sunday afternoon's entertainment and education (and also shopping, as it happened).

But first a little historical background ... now don't fall asleep in the back there! I'll keep this short and sweet.

3813ccd0.jpg

Ginger first came to Buderim as a few small raw pieces in the pre World War 1 days, and it was found that it thrived on the rich volcanic soils and climate of the region, with the steeply rising and dramatic volcanic origin Glasshouse Mountains to the south and the Blackall Ranges as a backdrop to the west. A few of you may remember my post some time ago on the flora and fauna of this Sunshine Coast hinterland region at this link.  

But it wasn't until the advent of World War 2 that five Buderim farmers came together to form the Buderim Ginger Grower's Cooperative Association Limited and the crop really started to take off as a serious marketable product.  And so, 

By the time the 1990's had roled in, Buderim ginger had earned global recognition for producing the World's Finest Ginger. An impressive feat indeed, the company's investment introduction facilities met the needs of customers in over 17 countries, and continues to do so today.
the Story of Ginger in the Buderim Ginger Factory's website

OK, sales talk over, and back to our trip.  On arrival at the Ginger Factory, we were heralded by two gingerbread men, acting as traffic controllers.

007cc272.jpg

Once inside, the complex proved to be more characteristic of a small theme park and tropical rainforest combo than the working factory that it also is, with gardens and a lake, a cafe and restaurant, and relics of old machinery and period buildings dispersed around the grounds, through which a small narrow gauge railway track meandered, not to mention shops selling various ginger products and the invariable T-shirts, tourist clothing and other 'gingified' household items.

We decided to start with a tour of the actual factory building, having arrived just in time for one of the guides to take us through the process of producing the goodies.  But first we had to pass the scrutiny of gingerbread tour guide man, who is now a good buddy of mine.

86028c52.jpg

We commenced our 'tour proper' with a delightful local young lady, who introduced us to some more of the history of the facility ...

c06b658b.jpg

386e6cba.jpg

... and gave us a knowledgable run down of the growing, harvesting and production processes, assisted by a video.  We were given an excellent gallery view of the various processing facilities, including an assortment of storage vats.

7845c49f.jpg

Here for the technocrats is an outline of the process:

The ginger is graded to detect fibre content at varying percentages. Candied, syrup, glace and crystallised ginger are further processed in the famous open vat system. The open vat allows the ginger to develop a juicy texture as the syrup penetrates through the ginger pieces. This combined with the evaporation of moisture from the vats results in a better development of the rich ginger taste, through the caramelisation of sugars and the concentration of the natural ginger flavours
Buderim Ginger Factory website, "Growing and Processing" extract.

So there we have it, now moving on ...

After an all too brief tasting of some of the finer ginger products, it was time to take the Moreton train (see the title photo and below). This mechanical masterpiece is seemingly a revamped former narrow gauge engine and carriages, retired from the nearby Moreton Sugar Mill in Nambour and well over 100 years old.

2127aa62.jpg

But, of course, we had to again first pass the scrutinising gaze of one of old mate gingerbread man's cousins, before "all aboard" for a rattling trip around the gardens, parklands and down memory lane.

b95d74f7.jpg

f399927f.jpg

da260abf.jpg

775aba02.jpg
391d811a.jpg

Once clear of the lake and gardens, the train trip took us past existing working facilities before traversing the perimeter of some old and well rusted cultivating machinery and an original ginger processing timber shack.

c41affba.jpg

f8b93217.jpg

Along the way we were befriended by a 'road runner' moor hen, keen to show off its sprinting skills alongside the 'green rattler'.

78b71bed.jpg

Once back on a steady and non-rattling footing, it was off for a ginger flavoured ice-cream and a look over the various products on display.

79aa9b56.jpg

Needless to say, the car was pretty well loaded up on the way home, with ginger marmalade and spreads, bottles of ginger cordial, ginger sweets and toys for the grandchild.

We resisted the temptation to purchase some ornamental ginger plants, such as the blue ginger below (Dichorisundra Thrysifolia for the green thumbs).


50d32584.jpg

Apparently there are hundreds of varieties of ginger, including many ornamental species, but we were informed that only the juicier and less fibrous Queensland sourced crop, known as 'Buderim Gold', is used for these local factory products.

There are many recipes for you to experiment with, using ginger as an ingredient, and you can find an assortment of these on the Buderim Ginger Factory website here. I've listed the names of a few dishes below to get your mouth watering and your ginger tongue tingling:

  • ginger jelly topped cheesecake
  • cherry, ginger and ricotta doughnuts
  • ginger mince pies
  • Turkish ginger and rose torte
  • sticky ginger sesame chicken
  • roasted carrot and ginger soup
  • roasted Buderim ginger marmalade chicken
  • ginger poached pears
  • ginger glazed salmon with soba noodles
  • fig, pecan and ginger loaf
  • apple, ginger and walnut bircher muesli.
There were still a couple of hours daylight left, however, in the long and hot January summer's day, and so we headed a few kilometres east to the coast and Coolum Beach. No time for a swim, but enough time for a quick paddle to cool off the feet ... 

425484af.jpg

... and for a walk along the beach before sunset and the drive back home.

beaf6137.jpg
...................<<..................>>...................

27321f60.jpgWhen not researching the weird or the wonderful, the comical or the cultured, the sinful or the serious, I chase my creative side, the results of which can be seen as selected photographs of my travels on my website at:

http://ken-boddie.squarespace.com

The author of the above, Ken Boddie, besides being a sometime poet and occasional writer, is an enthusiastic photographer, rarely leisure-travelling without his Canon, and loves to interact with other like-minded people with diverse interests.

Ken's three day work week (part time commitment) as a consulting engineer allows him to follow his photography interests, and to plan trips to an ever increasing list of countries and places of scenic beauty and cultural diversity.


thumb_up Relevant message Comment
Comments
Louise Smith

Louise Smith

7 months ago #30

#27
With the last 2 Summers, I am considering buying an icecream maker

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

7 months ago #29

#28
Ha ha, Robert Cormack, Gilligan’s Island wasn’t part of my mandatory Gogglebox education growing up in Scotland or subsequently here in Australasia. I do promise, however, to write 100 lines stating “I must watch reruns of Gilligan’s Island until my eyes go square.” 😟

Robert Cormack

Robert Cormack

7 months ago #28

Very good, Ken Boddie. I just wish you'd mentioned Ginger from Gilligan's Island in the beginning.

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

7 months ago #27

#26
You know what they say, Louise Smith. I scream, you scream, We all scream for ice cream. 😂🤣😂

Louise Smith

Louise Smith

7 months ago #26

I've been to the Ginger Factory from the time I was a child at Buderim the Yandina countless times Their ice cream is to die for

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

7 months ago #25

#23
BTW, I'm not familiar with your Russian donkey-cross anaesthetic. Presumably it's got a kick like a, well, mule? 😂 Don't drink much alcohol these days, having tortured my liver with enough booze for three lifetimes back in my uni days. Only likely to be tempted by a good, no I mean exceptional, glass of Kiwi sauvignon blanc or a local Aussie shiraz. Slàinte mhath!

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

7 months ago #24

#23
Good to see my favourite 'niece' back on beBee for a look around. I see your food pics occasionally on 'Facecrook'. Have you tried any of the recipes on the blue 'here' link above? Perhaps a 'foodie' like you might find something there to tickle your tastebuds?' All good here in sunny Queensland, but we won't be getting our first jabs for quite a few weeks yet. Still, apart from the hospitality and travel industries, life hasn't been too bad here over the last year or so, with only a few minimal short duration lockdowns and numbers of sufferers only a smidgeon of what you guys have gone through. Lang may yer lummy reek, Ms Fraser! 🤣

Lisa Gallagher

Lisa Gallagher

7 months ago #23

Hi Ken Boddie! I'm craving ginger now. Amazing how it looks after it's just been farmed from the ground. Love the photos & as always your wife is just so darn cute! I make a ginger/tumeric milk on occasion & use it many Asian dishes I make. Ginger and cilantro make great partners too. Oh and what about a good Moscow Mule? ;-) The ocean looks so inviting. As I told Paul Walters, we are trying to find a vacation home to rent in May- it will be our first outing after we are fully vaccinated. Husband has been since Feb, I will be as of April 18th (second vaccine on April 8th). Hope you are doing well!!!

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

7 months ago #22

#21
Bon appétit!

Lada 🏡 Prkic

Lada 🏡 Prkic

7 months ago #21

#20
I'll make the soup for Sunday dinner. :)

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

7 months ago #20

#19
True and true, Lada. 😁 As for the freshly picked taste ... you and me both. I get my ginger from the local fruit and veg shop, or occasionally the supermarket. I have no way of gauging how old it is, but it sure tastes like ginger to me. 🤗 BTW have you made that soup yet?

Lada 🏡 Prkic

Lada 🏡 Prkic

7 months ago #19

#18
I also noticed that readers don't open links, but also, many even don't read the whole post before commenting. beBee is no exception. As for ginger, I would like to know what is the taste of freshly picked ginger, not the one I buy at the store that stays on shelves for days. It must be a great difference. :)

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

7 months ago #18

#15
Yes, Lada, I believe you are the only one left on this platform (apart from myself) who still opens links. Gone are the days. But in this case that recipe link is rich with ideas for culinary reward. I hope you can get your ginger at a reasonable price and I’m sure you’ll enjoy that soup. Yum yum! I can smell it from here. 😋

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

7 months ago #17

#15
Yes, Lada, I believe you are the only one left on this platform (apart from myself) you still opens links. Gone are the days. But in this case that recipe link is rich with ideas for culinary reward. I hope you can get your ginger at a reasonable price and I’m sure you’ll enjoy that soup. Yum yum! I can smell it from here. 😋

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

7 months ago #16

#15
Yes, Lada, I believe you are the only one left on this platform (apart from myself) you still opens links. Gone are the days. But in this case that recipe link is rich with ideas for culinary reward. I hope you can get your ginger at a reasonable price and I’m sure you’ll enjoy that soup. Yum yum! I can smell it from here. 😋

Lada 🏡 Prkic

Lada 🏡 Prkic

7 months ago #15

Ken, thank you for taking us on that educative trip with you. :) I almost had a feeling I was there in person. Ginger has been on my diet for many years also - mostly fresh ginger. Thanks for the link with recipes (you know I always open links), A roasted carrot and ginger soup is the first on my list to make this weekend.

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

7 months ago #14

#13
I’m glad you enjoyed it, Queen Bee Franci\ud83d\udc1dEugenia Hoffman, beBee Brand Ambassador.

Franci 🐝Eugenia Hoffman, beBee Brand Ambassador

Beautiful post Ken Boddie, full of fascinating facts and lovely photos!

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

8 months ago #12

#11
I take it you must be sailing to Canada, mate? Pack your snow shoes. You won’t catch me on an international flight for a bloody long time yet, despite a ginger boost to the immune system. I might start thinking about it if most of the world gets vaccinated, but there’s a long way to go yet. 🙁 Still, spare a thought for the medics delivering the jabs. Must be a prick of a job. 😂🤣😂

Paul Walters

Paul Walters

8 months ago #11

Ken Boddie Oh for a Bundaberg Ginger Ale.! Know that area fairly well as back in the dark ages one of my clients was Eumundi Lager, a great microbrewery that was eventually swallowed ( excuse the bad pun) up by CUB. One of my longest-running ads was up there, a billboard on the highway that simply read ..." "Eumundy you Bewdy " Next time back I'll definitely visit your mate at the ginger factory ... I' drove past it hundreds of times. Off to Canada next week ( hopefully!!) so a few tales from the frozen north brewing

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

8 months ago #10

Thanks for sharing this post, Javier \ud83d\udc1d CR. 👍

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

8 months ago #9

#7
What, John Rylance??? Kick a Ginger??? Sounds like despicable, deliberate and dastardly discrimination of the most devilishly demonic and devious kind!!! Perhaps try https://gingerparrot.co.uk/calendar-of-redhead-events/ ? Seems like your UK roudy rangas have a full annual range of regular radical rendezvous throughout the year. 🧑‍🦱👩‍🦱👩‍🦰🧑🏻‍🦰

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

8 months ago #8

#7
You’re missing out on so many health benefits, John Rylance.

John Rylance

John Rylance

8 months ago #7

Did you know National Redhead Day is November 5th? (I wonder was Guy Fawkes ginger?) While November 20th is National kick a Ginger day. It was started as a joke, but some took it seriously. I believe South Park had it in one of its episodes. I must admit ginger is my least favourite seasoning.

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

8 months ago #6

#4
Incidentally, Pascal Derrien, Although you wouldn’t know it now, I was once a redhead. No hair, just a red head. 😂🤣😂

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

8 months ago #5

#4
Ha, ha, Pascal Derrien! Have no fear, as I’m always ‘rooting’ for my ginger friends. 🤗

Pascal Derrien

Pascal Derrien

8 months ago #4

what a nice , pleasant and well document post I bet no red hair were injured in the process

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

8 months ago #3

#1
Also, Joyce, the factory here separates the better ginger from the fibrous and tough ginger in a flotation process. If I remember what the guide said I believe the more fibrous form sinks whereas the less fibrous floats. They are both used but for different products.

Ken Boddie

Ken Boddie

8 months ago #2

#1
I understand, Joyce, that there’s an art to how old the ginger should be when picking the root or rhizome. If too young it’s very small and if left too old it becomes very tough and fibrous or stringy. I would either change my supplier or perhaps use a fine grater to grind your ginger. After grating, the powder seemingly loses its potency much quicker than the root. You can store the root in the freezer for up to 6 months for increased life but we’ve never proved if this correct or not. We use it up way before then. Although ginger is grown locally here in Queensland it’s currently quite expensive in root form (typically $50 per kg in the supermarkets).

Joyce 🐝 Bowen Brand Ambassador @ beBee

Nice. Such a relaxing story. I have dried ginger root, but I can never get it soft enough. Any tricks you can teach me? And no--I don't know what kind... I didn't know there were different kinds

More articles from Ken Boddie

View blog
6 days ago · 7 min. reading time
Ken Boddie

Climbing! Are you still up there?

It seems like a lifetime ago … and in many ways it ...

2 months ago · 4 min. reading time
Ken Boddie

Was that You?

Why do we get so indignant when someone lets one r ...

4 months ago · 6 min. reading time
Ken Boddie

Wish List for beBee.com

@Javier 🐝 CR · asked for feedback on additional b ...