Warm, spicy ginger is often associated with dark, sweet molasses and classified as a flavor meant to be used during the holiday baking season. As delicious as gingerbread is, however, ginger itself is a very versatile spice that can be enjoyed all year round in a wide variety of baked goods. There are two primary types of ginger that I work with on a regular basis in my kitchen: dried, ground ginger and fresh ginger. Ground ginger has a subtle spice, while fresh ginger has a much more potent bite to it, with a little bit of heat that will keep you coming back for more. In these Double Ginger Cupcakes, I used both powdered and fresh ginger.
The cupcake batter is easy to make, with the ground ginger going into the batter with the dry ingredients and fresh ginger going in with the wet ingredients. A microplane in a great tool for easily grating fresh ginger because it minces it very finely and draws a lot of flavorful juice out of the root. The ginger should be peeled using a paring knife or vegetable peeper before it is grated. The batter bakes up into cupcakes that are bright and spicy, with a wonderful ginger flavor and just the right amount of sweetness. The cupcakes also have a lovely texture, both fluffy and tender.
I topped these cupcakes with a lemon buttercream, as zesty citrus is often paired with ginger because it offers a nice contrast with the heat of the spice. I used my favorite 2-Ingredient Buttercream and added lemon zest to it. I would have garnished my cupcakes with some candied ginger, to further my ginger theme, but I happened to run out just before I made these, so I used a little strip of lemon peel as a garnish to dress them up.
Double Ginger Cupcakes with Lemon Buttercream
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
2 tsp fresh, grated ginger
2 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup milk (pref. whole milk)
Preheat oven to 350F. Line a muffin pan with 12 paper liners.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, ground ginger, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg, grated ginger and vanilla extract until well-combined. Stir in half of the flour mixture, followed by the milk. Stir in the remaining half of the flour mixture, mixing just until no streaks of dry ingredients remain visible. Divide batter evenly into prepared muffin cups.
Bake for 16-19 minutes, or until the cakes spring back when lightly pressed and a toothpick inserted into the center of each cake comes out clean.
Take the cupcakes out of the pan and place them on a wire rack. Allow cupcakes to cool completely before frosting.
2-Ingredient Buttercream Frosting
1 tbsp lemon zest
Prepare 2-ingredient buttercream frosting. Beat in lemon zest. Spread on cooled cupcakes.