Herbs & Plants (Spices)

Kaempferia galanga

Botanical Name: Kaempferia galanga
Family: Zingiberaceae
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Zingiberales
Genus: Kaempferia
Species: K. galanga

Common Names:Kencur, Galangal, Kentjur, Aromatic ginger, Sand ginger, Cutcherry, or Resurrection lily

Habitat: Kaempferia galanga is native to India and distributed in China, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Japan, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Laos, Sudan, Nigeria and South Africa.

Galanga is a small, stemless perennial herb growing up to 45cm tall from a rhizomatous rootstock. The thick, rounded leaves usually lay flat in a rosette on the ground.


Gathered from the wild for local use as a food and medicine, the plant is also sometimes cultivated as a spice in the tropics, especially in India, Malaya and China. The plant is also grown as an ornamenta

A plant of the moister tropics with a distinct dry season, it prefers a humid climate and a minimum temperature that seldom falls below about 18°c.
Prefers a rich, moist soil and a position in the shade. Species in this genus generally prefer a position in partial shade, growing best in a moist, well-drained, fertile, humus-rich soil.

Edible Uses:
Kaempferia galanga is used as an herb in cooking in Indonesia, where it is called kencur (‘cekur’ in Malaysia), and especially in Javanese and Balinese cuisines. Beras kencur, which combines dried K. galanga powder with rice flour, is a particularly popular jamu herbal drink. Its leaves are also used in the Malay rice dish, nasi ulam.

The young leaves can be eaten raw, steamed, in curries or cooked with chilli paste and used as a side dish with rice.

The tender young rhizomes are aromatic, They can be eaten raw, steamed, in curries or cooked with chilli paste and used as a side dish with rice. The rhizomes can also be used as a condiment and, when dried, have been used as a substitute for turmeric in curry powder.

Medicinal Uses:
Galanga is a bitter, stimulant herb with a camphoraceous aroma. It is antibacterial, improves the digestion and has diuretic effects.

The root is used internally to treat colds, bronchial complaints, dyspepsia and other gastric complaints, and headaches[238
. It is chewed to treat sore throats and coughs. It is used in traditional medicine for the treatment of high blood pressure and asthma. The roots are an ingredient of a post partum medicine.
Externally, the root is applied as a poultice to wounds, swellings and ulcers, and is also used to treat dandruff and rheumatic joints. It is used as a gargle for sore throats.

The leaves are chewed to treat coughs and sore throat.

Other Uses:
The aromatic, powdered root is used in linen sachets to repel moths from clothes. The aromatic, powdered root is added to body powders and cosmetics

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.


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