Adapted from Gourmet Magazine, July 2006
Makes 12 cupcakes (or about 16, if you like them a bit on the small side)
For the cupcakes:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 rounded tsp kosher salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp finely grated orange zest
1/3 cup crystallized ginger, finely chopped (about 2 oz)
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup honey
2 cups coarsely grated zucchini
Preheat the oven to 350ᵒF, with the rack arranged in the middle position. Line a cupcake pan with paper liners.
Combine the flour, ground ginger, cinnamon, salt, baking soda and baking powder in a medium mixing bowl. Whisk to combine thoroughly. Add the orange zest and whisk to combine. Add the chopped crystallized ginger and whisk to combine.
In a large mixing bowl, lightly beat the eggs. Add the vanilla and whisk to combine. Add the olive oil and vegetable oil and whisk to combine. Add the honey (Measure out the honey in the same measuring cups you used for the oil, after you measure out the oil – This will keep it from sticking to the sides of the cups.) and whisk to combine. Add the grated zucchini and mix to combine, using a rubber spatula.
Add the flour mixture to the zucchini mixture and mix with the rubber spatula until just combined. Add about 1/4 cup of batter to each muffin cup. (If you stick with a scant quarter cup, you can stretch the recipe to give you about sixteen petite cupcakes, which is what I like to do – Both because it looks nice, and because it means more cupcakes!)
Bake until the cupcakes are golden on top, and a wooden skewer inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Cool in the pan, about 5 minutes, then remove the cupcakes from the pan and cool to room temperature on a wire rack. Unfrosted cupcakes can be stored for 1 day at room temp, in an air-tight container.
For the frosting:
1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
8 oz cream cheese, softened
4 Tbl (1/2 stick) butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp finely grated orange zest
Add the powdered sugar, ginger and cinnamon to a medium mixing bowl and whisk to combine. Set aside.
Add the softened cream cheese and butter to the bowl of a stand mixer. Using a paddle attachment, beat on high until fluffy, about three minutes. (Once or twice, turn off the mixer and use a rubber spatula to scrape the frosting down the sides of the bowl. Add the vanilla and orange zest and beat for about 30 seconds more.
Add the sugar mixture to the cream cheese mixture in the bowl of the stand mixer. Beat on high speed until well combined and fluffy, about 2 minutes. (Again, frequently use a spatula to scrape the frosting down the sides of the bowl and back into the center.)
Fill a pastry bag, fitted with a medium star tip, with the frosting. Frost the tops of the cooled cupcakes.