Peel the ginger root.
Chop the ginger root into small, bite size pieces. Cut it against the grain to minimize strings, especially if you have a tougher piece of ginger root.
Mix the sugar and water in a saucepan. Add the black peppercorns (optional), red pepper flakes (optional), and ginger root. If you want to keep the peppercorns and flakes separate from the ginger, simply wrap them in cheesecloth or place them in a tea ball.
Bring to a boil over medium heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves.
Cook over medium heat for 30 minutes.
Remove from heat and strain out the ginger root.
Place the ginger root on waxed paper and let dry.
Once the syrup has cooled, pour it into a container.