Ginger has become a staple on our grocery list. It's good for health benefits, like in tea or soup, and it's delicious in meals, like in a stir-fry or salad. But after using ginger for some time, I discovered that it became difficult to keep the ginger root, which is usually sold in very large pieces, fresh for long periods of time. We never used the entire thing in one meal, and after a lot of trial and error, I found the best (and easiest) way to store ginger both before and after it is sliced: put it in the fridge.
First, I buy ginger root that's firm, smooth, and unwrinkled. Then I put it in an air-tight plastic bag, squeezing all of the extra air out of it, and place it into the crisper basket in our refrigerator. I've found that this works far better than simply placing the whole root inside the refrigerator without covering it at all or even leaving it on the kitchen counter. Covering within a plastic bag will allow it to stay fresh for weeks at a time and not dry out — until you peel it that is.
Once you peel the ginger root, its shelf-life drastically reduces. But blotting any wetness from the cut or peeled root with a paper towel and then placing it back into the same air-tight bag will preserve its freshness for longer. You may get one or two extra weeks out of the root after it's already been cut.