Triple Ginger & Lemon Zest Muffins Topped with Sugar


I first made these muffins probably 15 years ago. What I didn't know when I made them the first time was if the ginger and lemon would work together, but the flavors married are awesome. I have made these again and again as they are simple, and not overly sweet or rich. Over the years I have stepped up the recipe a bit by also adding ground ginger and crystallized ginger You may think that's an abundance of ginger, it doesn't overpower, and along with the lemon zest becomes a

4 oz unpeeled fresh ginger
1 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup crystallized ginger, finely chopped
2 cups flour
1/3 cup plus 1/2 cup plus 3 tbsp. sugar
2 tbsp. lemon zest
1/2 tsp salt
1 stick butter, softened
1/4 tsp baking soda
2 eggs
1/4 tsp ground ginger
sugar for topping the muffins
Preheat oven to 375. Grease 12 muffin tin and an extra muffin tin (this makes 13...I tried 12 but the muffins baked over the side of the tin, making them hard to get out), or line with cupcake liners. Cut the fresh ginger into large chunks. Chop fine in food processor (I use my mini Kitchenaid). Scrape ginger out and put into a small skillet along with 1/3 cup sugar. Cook over medium/low heat until sugar has melted and mixture is hot (a couple of minutes). Remove from stove and let cool. Put lemon zest, crystallized ginger and 3 tbsp. sugar into ginger mixture. Stir and set aside. Place butter in mixing bowl and add remaining sugar. Beat until smooth. Add the lemon/ginger mixture, then the eggs one at a time. Combine flour, salt and baking soda in a bowl. Add alternately with the buttermilk mixture, ending with the flour. Beat just until the whole thing comes together. Fill 13 cupcake cups evenly (I use a scoop to start with). If you're using sparkling sugar, spoon on top of muffins at this point. Bake 15-20 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. In a small bowl, put a few scoops of sugar. As quickly after you get the muffins out of the oven as you can release them from the tin and rub face-down in the sugar (this may take a few minute depending on how much heat your fingers can stand). Place muffins on cooling rack.


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