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I have been trying to select fresh ginger by buying hands which are not wrinkled, light brown, hand peel-able, etc.

What I have found is that on some days eating raw ginger complete melts in my mouth and an other days bits of it remain chewy. Some parts also feel like strings.

I'm wondering if on those days bits of the ginger feel more chewy did I buy a less fresh piece or is it normal for parts of the ginger to be chewy so long as it's not the whole piece and therefore parts which feel like strings or chewy are still fresh so long as most of that piece was chewable?

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Ginger is generally quite a fibrous/stringy root already, but will tend to become harder with time as it dries out or becomes less fresh.

However, the age of the ginger (i.e. when it was harvested) probably plays a bigger role in how fibrous it is; the older it is the more fibrous it becomes. Younger ginger is also sweeter and less spicy than older ginger as some sugars are converted to starches, and the colour of the ginger's juice also tends to become paler with older ginger.

Variance in stringiness in one piece of ginger might just be down to thinner parts drying out faster than thicker parts, but whether it's "fresh" is too subjective to answer - if you find it too stringy you could use it for something other than eating directly.

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