Red Galangal is Sought After by Many People for Health

Galangal or Laos (Alpinia galanga) is a type of tuber plant that can live in the highlands and lowlands. Galangal is a type of spice that is commonly found in Asian regions, such as India, Arabia, China, Sri Lanka and Indonesia. This plant belongs to the family

This Zingiberaceae grows well in moist and loose soil. Conversely, it will be difficult to grow if the soil conditions are muddy. Galangal thrives in the lowlands with altitudes reaching 1200 above sea level.

Galangal Classification

There are two types of galangal, namely red galangal which is used as a herbal or anti-fungal medicine and white galangal which is used as a cooking ingredient or spice.

The classification of galangal plants is as follows:

  • Kingdom : Plantae ( Plants )
  • Subkingdom: Tracheobionta ( Vascular plants )
  • Super Division: Spermatophyta (Produces seeds)
  • Division: Magniliophyta (flowering plants)
  • Class: Liliopsida (One piece / monocot)
  • Sub class : Commelinidae
  • Family: Zingiberaceae
  • Genus: Alpine
  • Species : Alpinia galanga L. Swartz

Description of Galangal

Galangal is a plant that can grow up to 3.5 cm and has adventitious roots. This plant also has an upright stem with a height of 2 m or more, has a single leaf measuring 25-50 cm x 7-15 cm with a leaf sheath measuring 15-30 cm, has a short stalk and has an elongated lanceolate leaf shape, the tip is sharp, blunt at the base, and flat at the edges. In addition, this plant also has bell-shaped flower petals with a greenish-white color, where the flower lips are 2.5 cm long, white with a pink slash on each side. It has white and red tubers with large and thick rhizomes, cylindrical in shape with a diameter of 2-4 cm

Galangal’s Contains

Galangal rhizome contains about 1% greenish-yellow essential oil consisting mainly of 48% methylcinnamate, 20% -30% cineol, eugenol, 1% camphor, sesquiterpenes. In addition, the rhizome also contains a resin called galangal, yellow crystals called kaemferida and galangin, kadin, hexabidrocadalene hydrate, quercetin, starch, several flavonoid compounds, and others. Galangal contains diarylheptanoid compounds called 1-(4-hydroxyphenyl)-7-phenylheptane-3,5-diol, cetoxychavicol acetate and acetoxyeugenol acetate, which are anti-inflammatory and antitumor. caryophyllene oxide, caryophylleneol, quercetin 3-methylether, isorhamnetin, kaempferid, galangin, galangin 3-methylether, rhamnocitrin dan 7-hydroxy-3,5-dimethoxyflavone

The Difference Between Red Galangal and White Galangal

Red galangal and white galangal come from the same plant, there are some significant differences between the two types of plants.

  1. Color difference. The color difference in the galangal can be seen on the inside of the galangal, where the red galangal is more dominant than white in white galangal.
  2. The difference in texture. Red galangal has a harder texture compared to white galangal. Red galangal also has a stronger aroma than white galangal.
  3. Differences in use in cooking. Red galangal is more often used in Indonesian dishes, such as in rendang, curry or satay dishes. Meanwhile, white galangal is more often used in Chinese dishes, such as stir-fries or soups

Benefits of White Galangal

There are 2 types of galangal, namely white galangal and red galangal. White galangal is generally used as a spice, by bruising it and mixing it into food so that it produces a more attractive aroma and taste of food. White galangal rhizome is known to have antimicrobial compounds such as flavonoids, quinones, and essential oils consisting of terpenes and phenolic compounds which also function as anti-bacterials.

Benefits of Red Galangal

There are several health benefits associated with red galangal, including:

  1. Anti-inflammatory: Red galangal contains anti-inflammatory compounds that can help reduce inflammation in the body.
  2. Anti-cancer: Some studies have shown that components in this plant can help inhibit the growth of cancer cells.
  3. Anti-bacterial: Red galangal has anti-bacterial properties that can help in treating bacterial infections.
  4. Anti-viral: Red galangal is able to help in treating viral infections.
  5. Anti-oxidant: Red galangal contains antioxidants that can help protect the body from cell damage caused by free radicals.
  6. Boosting the immune system
  7. Improving heart health
  8. Improving digestive health.

Galangal Cultivation

Cultivation of galangal is carried out by carrying out the seeding process to produce seeds, namely by drying the newly harvested galangal, but not to dry, then the rhizomes are stored for 30-60 days, the  which has 3-5 buds is broken, then it is dried again for 1-1.5 days . Seedlings are dipped in fungicide solution to remove adhering fungi and parasites, and put in wooden crates and after 2-4 weeks can open the seedbed. After producing the seeds, planting will be carried out, usually this is done during the rainy season because the young shoots need more water. Planting is done by making a hole as deep as 3.75 cm.

Plants that have been planted need to be maintained, namely by doing embroidery, fertilizing, weeding, watering. Stitching is done 2-3 weeks after planting. Fertilization usually uses liquid organic fertilizer and solid organic fertilizer. Solid organic fertilizer is given 14 days after planting while liquid organic fertilizer is done once every 10 days by watering or spraying. After that it will produce a harvest. Harvesting is done after the plants are 10-12 months oldHarvesting is done by dismantling the rhizome with a ground fork, then the fork is lifted up slowly. Galangal that has been harvested is then cleaned by beating gently to separate it from the dirt.

The Drying Process of Galangal  

The drying process of galangal  is one way to store and maintain the quality of this plant. There are several methods that can be used in the drying process, including:

  1. Natural drying: Ginger is placed in a shady and low-temperature area for several days until dry.
  2. Drying using an oven: Ginger is placed in an oven with a temperature set between 40-60 degrees Celsius for several hours until dry.
  3. Drying using a dehydrator: Ginger is placed in a dehydrator with a temperature set between 40-60 degrees Celsius for several hours until dry.

The dry galangal can be stored in a dry and tightly sealed container. Dry galangal can be used in various dishes or processed into powder to be used as a seasoning. It should be noted that the proper drying process is important to maintain the quality and taste of galangal.

Dried Galangal
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