Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Any of various sedges of the genus Cyperus, especially C. longus of Europe, having rough-edged leaves, reddish spikelets, and aromatic roots.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun See galangal.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Bot.) A plant of the Sedge family (Cyperus longus) having aromatic roots; also, any plant of the same genus.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Alternative spelling of galangal.
  • noun One of several species of Cyperus sedges with aromatic rhizomes.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun European sedge having rough-edged leaves and spikelets of reddish flowers and aromatic roots

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English, aromatic root of any of several kinds of plants, galangal; see galangal.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English, via Old French from Arabic كالانجان (ḵalanjān), probably from Chinese 高粱 (gāoliángjiāng), from 高粱 (gāoliáng, a district in Guongdong Province, China) + (jiāng, "ginger").

Examples

  • It’s like—Well, have either of you ever heard of a spice called galingale?

    TO STORM HEAVEN

  • Each of the spices in the three mixtures appears in other combinations, and some recipes also use coriander seeds and cardamom, as well as spices that are even more exotic today than they were in fourteenth-century Venice, such as galingale and melegueta pepper.

    Delizia!

  • He found abundant cinnamon in Tibet and Malabar; saw ginger growing along the Yellow River; reported a busy trade in ginger, sugar, and galingale in the ports of Bengal; and witnessed locally grown pepper, nutmeg, cubeb, and cloves on sale in Java.

    Delizia!

  • Himera, the galingale hummed over by the bees, and the pine that dropped her cones, and Amaryllis in her cave, and Bombyca with her feet of carven ivory.

    Letters to Dead Authors

  • Sauce: Take the issue giblets & wash it well, & scour the guts well with salt, & boil the issue all together, & wash it well & hew it small, & take bread & powder of ginger & of galingale & grind together & temper it with the broth, & colour it with the blood.

    30,000 Swans a Swimming

  • Ingredients: One swan (with giblets); lard; salt; broth; toasted breadcrumbs; ginger; galingale (an aromatic root); red wine vinegar

    Archive 2006-12-01

  • Ingredients: One swan (with giblets); lard; salt; broth; toasted breadcrumbs; ginger; galingale (an aromatic root); red wine vinegar

    30,000 Swans a Swimming

  • Sauce: Take the issue giblets & wash it well, & scour the guts well with salt, & boil the issue all together, & wash it well & hew it small, & take bread & powder of ginger & of galingale & grind together & temper it with the broth, & colour it with the blood.

    Archive 2006-12-01

  • Incidentally, the OED has the entry form galingale used by Chaucer in the Prologue to the Canterbury Tales: "A Cook they hadde with hem for the nones/ To boille the chiknes with the Marybones/ And poudre Marchant tart and galyngale" and gives the following impressive variety of forms:

    languagehat.com: LENGKUA/GALANGAL.

  • Add lesser quantities (the recipe says a denier) of the following spices: galingale, cloves (no more than 1/2 teaspoon, I suggest), gillyflower (if you can get it, which I have never succeeded in doing), long pepper (Asian groceries have this, sometimes), nutmeg, cardamon, mace.

    Even in a little thing

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