Well, it HAS been a while, hasn’t it?! I’m getting settled into my job, so I have the time to update this more regularly. My lovely friend Kristen was moving out of her apartment today, and I offered to bake her some cupcakes as she had recently bestowed upon me some of her incredible handcrafted pottery.
As for the roses, well, they’re from my sweet boyfriend, surprising me out of the blue.
In order to craft a cupcake worthy of Kristen’s taste buds, I searched through her pintrest and found a mocha cupcake recipe to use as a base for these babies. They’ve been well received and as for my own opinion, they’re my favorite cupcakes I’ve ever made or eaten.
The honey in the frosting complimented the flavor of the chai tea within the cupcake, the cake itself was moist and flavorful but not overpowering, and the aftertaste was pleasant.
Lets get started!
- 3/4 cup hot and strong chai tea
- 3/4 cup cocoa powder
- 3/4 cup butter, softened to room temperature (Hint: I stick my butter from the fridge into the microwave for 18-20 seconds and it’s perfect for creaming)
- 2 cups brown sugar
- 3 large eggs, room temperature (Hint: I cheat and stick cold eggs in really warm water for 5 minutes, it’ll bring them right down to room temperature)
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 dash of ground ginger
- 1 cup buttermilk (Hint: I use 1 cup regular milk (2% or whole milk work best) and add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and it works about the same.)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons mayonnaise (USE IT I PROMISE IT MAKES THE CAKE MOIST AND DELICIOUS AND THE TASTE ISN’T AFFECTED AT ALL.)
- 4 cups of powdered sugar
- 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoons salt
To make the cupcakes:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line your cupcake trays with 24 cupcake liners. (I used leftover valentines liners and some shiny metallic ones.)
- Once the tea has steeped long enough in hot water, add the cocoa powder to the cup, stir well, and set it aside.
- In a medium sized bowl, mix the flour, baking soda, baking powder, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, and ground ginger. Set it aside.
- Mix the buttermilk and vanilla extract together and (you guessed it) set it aside.
- Cream the butter, salt, and brown sugar together in a large bowl. Once sufficiently creamed, add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Add 1/3 of the flour mixture to the cream mixture and whisk until smooth. Add 1/2 of the buttermilk mixture and whisk until smooth. Add another 1/3 of the flour mixture, whisking again. Add the second 1/2 of the buttermilk mixture, whisk well. Finally, add the final 1/3 of the flour mixture and whisk until it almost looks velvety (or, y’know, combined).
- Add the chai tea and cocoa mix to the batter, mixing well.
- Add the mayonnaise and stir it in. (TRUST ME, OKAY.)
- Fill each of the cupcake liners evenly with the batter. (I used about two spoonfuls to fill each of the liners.) (HINT FROM MY GUY: If you come up a bit short, if you fill the empty cupcake nooks (without liners) halfway with water, it will help the rest of the cupcakes baked evenly.)
- Pop the trays in the oven for 16-18 minutes. I would suggest doing a single tray of 12 at once so the oven doesn’t get crowded and not distribute the heat properly.
- They are done once a toothpick can come out clean after being poked into the cupcake.
To make the frosting
- Whisk together the powdered sugar, cream, honey, cinnamon, and salt until smooth and slightly thick. (It will be a bit less thick than buttercream frosting, but still a substantially thick frosting.)
- Frost the COMPLETELY COOLED (very important that they are COMPLETELY COOLED) cupcakes with the frosting, either using a spoon (warning if you use a spoon the lure of eating all of the frosting before it hits the cake will intensify), piping bags, or a knife to spread the frosting on the cakes.
This recipe should make 24 cupcakes, but I’m not going to bother telling you a serving size because really, who can just eat one cupcake and call it a serving?