Chai tea is an ingredient which doesn’t garner a lot of attention in the baking world, but this delicious cupcake recipe is worth a try. If you’re good at math, cut the recipe in half to make a more couple friendly number, or make a whole batch and share with friends; you’ll be expected to bring baked goods from then on!
Several mixing bowls, at least two medium and one large sized
Spatula, whisk and a wooden spoon
Measuring cups and spoons
Electric hand-held mixer (or standing if available)
Muffin pan (12 numbered are best for a whole batch)
Piping or icing bag (quart zipper storage bag will also suffice)
Food dye (red only if you’re feeling decorative)
Ingredients – for the cupcakes:
1 1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon cardamom
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup applesauce
1 cup milk
4 chai tea bags
For the frosting:
1 cup butter or margarine
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 to 4 1/2 cups confectioners (powdered) sugar
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin pan with liners.
2. In the first medium bowl mix together flour, baking soda, baking powder, slat, cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, nutmeg and cloves. Set aside.
3. In a small saucepan, warm the milk just until it simmers. Remove from heat, add tea bags and steep for ten minutes. Cool until it’s safe to handle.
4. In large bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Hint: if using butter straight out of the fridge, microwave in a ceramic bowl for thirty seconds — fifteen seconds first, then flip and the remaining time. It will melt it a little bit, but this is the best way to work with butter, even at room temperature it can be a bit hard to work with. The electric mixer on the lowest speed may be useful at this stage.
5. Add the eggs one at a time, beating until combined. Scrape the bowl and then add the applesauce until just incorporated.
6. Sprinkle one third of the flour mixture over batter and mix until just combined. Add half of the chai mixture, then continue with another third of the flour and the remaining chai mixture. Finally, add the last of the flour mixture and be careful not to over mix.
7. Fill each liner with two tablespoons of batter. Bake for 14 to 16 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out mostly clean (you don’t want gooey cupcakes, and most ovens are different). Let cool completely. I mean it, let them.
8. In your second medium bowl start the frosting, cream together the cup of butter; this is where an electric mixer is key. Once the butter is creamed and basically whipped, add one cup of confectioner’s sugar. Don’t be afraid if it doesn’t cream together right away, let chemistry take the wheel and wait for the crumbling to lead to creamy goodness. Add the teaspoon of vanilla, cinnamon and about four to eight drops of food dye (depending on the hue of pink desired). Mix thoroughly and add the remaining cups of sugar one at a time, so as not to make a huge mess. I only used about three cups of sugar, but you can continue up to four and a half.
9. Once the cupcakes are COMPLETELY cool, if they aren’t, there is risk of melted, messy frosting, so just wait; use a piping or icing or your zipper bag to frost. If using zipper bag, cut corner, to let out desired amount of frosting. To move the frosting from bowl to bag use a spatula and scoop into bag. A circular motion is used to make a nice swirl. Sprinkle with cinnamon for garnish and enjoy!
Makes about 24 cupcakes