Vanilla Spice Chai Cupcakes

Chai cupcakes 1
So, I’ve done the inevitable, and taken a bit of time away from blogging, very unfortunately. Work has been super hectic, and right now where I’m based is facing an outbreak of ebola, which happens to rank among the top five things I never wanted to deal with in my life. But, I’m still here, working with senior Ministry of Health officials on the national response, and trying to keep on working until my holiday is T-3 weeks. Ebola happens to be not as scary as Hollywood may have portrayed it, as the risk to most people is exceptionally low…but there’s still a lot of education that needs to happen, and containment, which isn’t always the easiest thing to handle in a low resource country.
But, on a happier note, I’m still baking! Here’s a recipe that I made some time ago, and loved loved loved. One of the things I miss most is chai latte from Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, my favorite coffee shop from the West Coast that happened to finally, after years of praying, make its way to New York City. 🙂 So without my weekly dose of chai goodness, I figured these cupcakes are the next best thing. Or maybe, the best thing?
chai close up
It’s a super easy recipe, that channels all the wonderful spices into a truly delicious cupcake. Enjoy!
Vanilla Spice Chai Cupcakes
Recipe slightly adapted from Gimme Some Oven
Chai Spice Mix

1 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

First, prepare the chai spice mix in a small bowl, by mixing all of the above ingredients.

chai mix as a flower
Sometimes I make flowers with ingredients before mixing. 🙂
Cupcake Ingredients

1/2 cup (1 stick or 113g) butter
1 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 eggs, at room temperature
2 1/2 teaspoons chai spice mix (recipe above)
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup buttermilk (or make your own by adding 1/2 tsp lemon juice or white vinegar to 1/2 cup of milk, and allow to sit for about five minutes before adding to the batter)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar

Preheat oven to 325 degrees fahrenheit / 162 degrees celsius. Prepare a cupcake pan with liners.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar. Add the vanilla and mix. Then beat in the eggs one at a time. Using a spatula or wooden spoon, stir in 2 1/2 teaspoons of the chai spice mix.

First fold in a bit of the flour and mix, then add a bit of the buttermilk and mix, and continue to add the two ingredients alternating until they are completely combined. Make sure not to over mix the batter!

In a separate bowl, mix together the baking soda and vinegar, then add it to the batter and mix until combined.

Fill each cupcake liner about 3/4 of the way full, and bake 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean.

Spiced Vanilla Buttercream

1 cup (2 sticks or 226g) butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
4-5 cups powdered sugar, sifted
Remainder of the chai spice mix (1 1/2 tsp should be left)

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, beat the butter until it is creamy and lighter in color, about 2-3 minutes. On low, mix in the vanilla and the rest of the chai spice mix.

Sift in the powdered sugar one cup at a time, beating the frosting between each addition.  If the buttercream becomes too thick then add cold milk 1 tablespoon at a time until the desired consistency is reached. Then pipe onto cooled cupcakes with your favorite frosting tip, and serve and enjoy!

group of delicious cupcakes

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One Comment Add yours

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