Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Brush a 12-cup standard muffin pan with melted butter or oil. Sift the flour and ground ginger together into a large mixing bowl. Stir in the brown sugar and chopped ginger, and make a well in the center of the mixture.
Place the butter and honey in a small saucepan and stir over low heat until melted. Remove from the heat. Whisk the milk and eggs together.
Add the butter mixture, egg mixture and the bananas to the well in the dry ingredients. Stir with a metal spoon until just combined. Do not overmix - the mixture should be lumpy. Spoon the mixture into the muffin pan, filling each cup about three-quarters full. Bake for 20 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted into the center of a muffin. Cool the muffins in the pan for 5 minutes, then lift out onto a wire rack to cool completely before spreading with the topping.
FOR THE TOPPING: Beat the cream cheese, confectioners' sugar and grated lemon rind until light and creamy. Spread onto the muffins and decorate with thin slices of preserved or crystallized ginger.
CHEF'S TIP: Whether you use preserved or crystallized ginger, it's best to rinse the pieces briefly in cool water to remove the syrup or sugar coating before chopping or slicing.
Recipe reprinted by permission of Tuttle Publishing/Periplus Editions. All rights reserved.