Chances are you have had your fair share of cupcakes; either baking them for your little one’s birthday party or perhaps taking store bought versions for a play date. And chances are, these cupcakes were probably covered per children’s tastes with the standard overly-saccharine frosting in some artificial neon color, topped with a confetti of sprinkles, with the latest character pegged on top. Hey, you’re not above those necessarily. Sometimes having the time to shovel anything in your mouth is a treat, we get it.
So chances are, you have nothing against cupcakes, hell, you love cupcakes! But sometimes you want an adult version, something with decadence that does not involve embellishments. We have a cupcake for you, Momma, a cupcake that is almost as gratifying as enjoying a cup of chai in solitude. Almost.
Our cupcakes conjure the same, soothing, warming notes as chai with a batter chock full of all the same masalas you would find in your cup – fresh ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, and fennel. The frosting, too, is spiced making this treat the perfect companion to chai, hands down.
CHAI MASALA CUPCAKES WITH SPICED FROSTING
makes one dozen cupcakes
- 1 stick or 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup white granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups cake flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder
- 1/4 teaspoon green cardamom powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg powder
- 1/8 teaspoon fennel powder
- 2/3 cups whole milk
- 1/2 tablespoon finely minced or grated ginger (squeeze juice and use as well)
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 2 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 4 tablespoons whole milk
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon powder
- 1/8 teaspoon ginger powder
- 12 candied ginger pieces OR cinnamon sticks (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare muffin tin/cups with paper lining. Set aside.
- In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla extract.
- In a separate bowl, combine dry items: flour, baking powder, cinnamon powder, green cardamom powder, salt, nutmeg powder, and fennel powder.
- Gradually add dry mixture to creamed mixture; add milk and ginger to mixture.
- Fill lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Bake for 24-28 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.
- Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
(Note: Do NOT apply frosting until cupcakes are completely cooled!)
For the frosting: Using a stand or hand mixer and beat butter until fluffy; mix in the confectioners’ sugar, vanilla, cinnamon powder, and ginger powder and beat to combine. (Note: Do NOT add all the milk at once. Add 1 tablespoon at a time to reach desired consistency.) Pipe frosting over cupcakes. Garnish with candied ginger or cinnamon (optional).
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