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 1/3 cup crystallized ginger, finely chopped
sugar for topping muffins
Preheat oven to 375. Grease 12 cup muffin tin and an extra muffin tin (this makes 13...I tried 12 but the muffins baked over the side of the tin, making it hard to get them 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). 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 minutes depending on how much heat your fingers can stand). Place muffins on cooling rack. Bon appetit!
You can see a piece of the crystallized ginger here....