With the weekend upon me and feeling a little uninspired, I struggled on Friday night with the grocery shopping (sans any real plan). I managed to come up with a quiche idea on the spot in Whole Foods when I passed by the faux meat area and picked up a package of LightLife’s Gimme Lean sausage. Today’s quiche ended up a amalgamation of flavors with the faux breakfast sausage, spinach and portabello mushrooms–among a healthy dose of garlic and onion (of course).
But what I really wanted were cupcakes. I know, shocker. As you may recall, last week I drove 30 minutes one way for cupcakes. Indeed, I have an addiction; in all fairness, a good (really good) vegan cupcake is hard to find. And because I don’t get them too often, I will accept the ones I buy are probably higher in fat than I would like. So, drawing some inspiration from a set of recipes sent to me recently and a want to feed the addiction today, I sat down and did some chai cupcake research.
Essentially, a chai cupcake is just a spice cake, but I really wanted to nail the essence of having a chai latte–sweet, spicy and touch of creaminess. I found several recipes–all with bad reviews (none vegan or low fat). None of them even gave me a hint at the right proportion of spice. Sigh. I’d have to really put some thought into it. And, I’m glad that I did. I ended up with a perfectly spiced, very moist cupcake. I even gave into my better judgement and made frosting. It was and is, too sweet–or perhaps it was just too much on the cupcake (or someone sampled too much and had a frosting coma beyond recoup), but it’s flavor was also near perfection.
Vegan Chai Latte Cupcakes
1 cup soy milk
3 chai tea bags
1 tablespoon flax seed meal
3 tablespoons water (room temperature)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup applesauce (canned pumpkin would also work here nicely)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 350. Line muffin pan with liners and spray with cooking spray to minimize sticking.
- In a small dish mix flax seed meal and water and set aside.
- In a small pan add soy milk and tea bags; you want milk to get hot but not boil.
- Squeeze tea bags out using two spoons to get as much flavor out as possible. Discard used tea bags.
- In mixer, add sugars, applesauce, vanilla, baking powder, baking soda, and spices. Blend well.
- Add in the flax seed meal mixture to incorporate.
- Slowly pour in the chai milk mixture.
- Add flour 1/4 cup at a time until all is just incorporated. Scrapping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
- Spoon batter into liners.
- Bake 15-20 minutes or until cupcakes are firm to the touch and spring back when pressed down on.
- Allow to cool and either frost or enjoy plain.
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup Earth Balance buttery spread
2 tablespoons cool chai tea
1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon cardamom
1/4 teaspoon ginger
quick dash cloves
- Mix all until creamy. If too dry add a little more chai to thin.
- Frost cupcakes to your desired sweetness.