Super Gingery Lemon Muffins

  • 4-5 oz piece unpeeled fresh ginger
  • 3/4 cup plus 3 Tbsp sugar
  • Zest of 2 lemons
  • 8 Tbsp unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup ginger preserves, or more to taste

Preheat oven to 375°F and grease muffin tins.  Chop the unpeeled ginger into very small pieces- you should have about 1/4 cup (a bit more is fine).  Put the ginger and 1/4 cup sugar into a small skillet and cook for a few minutes over medium heat, stirring until the sugar has melted.  Let cool.  Mix the lemon zest and 3 TB sugar together.  Add to the cool ginger mixture, stir to combine and set aside.  Put the butter in a mixing bowl and beat briefly.  Add the remaining 1/2 cup sugar and beat until smooth.  Add the eggs and beat well.  Add the buttermilk and mix well.  Add the flour, salt, and baking soda.  Beat until smooth.  Add the ginger-lemon mixture and mix well.  Spoon half of the batter into the muffin tins.  Place 1- 1 1/2 tsp of the ginger preserves into the center of each portion of batter and then spoon the remaining batter evenly over each to cover.  Bake 15-20 minutes until golden brown.  Best served warm.