These little cakes are perfect when you want to ginger yourself up on a chilly day. I love the warmth and zing of ginger so I went a bit overboard, adding it to the cake, the filling and the icing. Oh and on top of the icing.
Ginger curd is available (in the UK) from good delis, from Lakeland and online. I'm afraid I drew the line at making my own because I wanted nearly instant gratification, but there are recipes readily available via that useful kitchen gadget, Google.
If you don't want to fill the cakes, they're good as they are, with or without icing. I couldn't resist eating one warm from the oven and it was as light as a feather, with a bit of crunch and punch from the stem ginger.
Ginger Cupcakes with Ginger Curd Filling (makes 12)
Ingredients for the cakes:
150g butter, room-temperature
150g light or dark brown Muscovado sugar
150g self-raising flour
1 tspn powdered ginger
1 tbsp milk
150g stem ginger in syrup, finely chopped (reserve the syrup)
Plus ginger curd for the filling
For the icing:
100g icing sugar
2 tbsp ginger syrup
1-2 tspn lemon juice
A few more pieces of stem ginger, shredded, to put on top
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 and line a 12-hole cupcake tin with paper cases.
Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. In another bowl, sift the flour with the powdered ginger.
Add the eggs one at the time to the butter and sugar mixture, alternating with spoonfuls of flour to prevent curdling. Once everything is combined, mix in the milk then the finely chopped stem ginger.
Divide the mixture between the cupcake cases. Bake for about 20-25 minutes until they're risen and springy and a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Remove to a wire rack and allow to cool completely.
Fill a piping bag or syringe with the ginger curd, using a nozzle as small as you can get away with. Push the nozzle about an inch deep into the cakes and inject the curd. I used about a teaspoonful but it's a matter of personal taste.
If you don't have an icing bag, I've seen suggestions that you can use an apple corer to remove a piece of the cake, though I haven't tried it. If you do, be careful not to go all the way to the bottom or the filling will leak into the cupcake case.
For the frosting, mix the icing sugar with the ginger syrup and lemon juice, just enough to make it runny enough to work with. Drizzle the icing over the cakes and put a little heap of shredded ginger on top. Allow the icing to set before tucking in.