Vanilla Chai Cupcakes

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Almost four years ago, I created a cupcake recipe that became a huge hit and I am so, so proud of it! You can find my original post here at an old blog.

I’ve made the recipe several times over the years, but today was the first time I cracked it out in a LONG time. I decided to make a post revisiting my favourite recipe of all time, because I think my photography has improved a lot as well. If you look carefully, I have even used the same little cake stand!

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What I really love is that this recipe has been made and shared by blogs all over the world! One of my favourite adaptations is this one with a tangy blackberry filling… yummo! Now I must be honest with you all, one blog that used my recipe never gave me any credit and that blog post went on to become very popular. That really annoys me – this recipe is like a piece of artwork. I worked so hard to create it, and I shared it with the world because it’s so tasty but please give people credit!

So here is the original recipe again. Some people make the icing with a mixture of cream cheese and butter but I am yet to try this myself, I think I just like sticking to the original!

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Vanilla Chai Cupcakes

Makes 12

  • 100g butter
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • ½ tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ quantity chai spice mix (recipe follows)
  • 1 ¼ cups plain flour, sifted
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • ½ tsp bicarb soda
  • ½ tsp apple cider vinegar (white vinegar is fine)

Chai Spice Mix

  • 1 ½ tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp ground cloves
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • Mix spices together in a small bowl.

Vanilla Chai Buttercream

  • 125g butter
  • ½ tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 3 cups icing sugar, sifted
  • ½ quantity chai spice mix
  • 1-2 tbs cold milk

Preheat the oven to 160C

Cream together the butter and sugar. Add the vanilla and beat in one egg at a time. Stir in half the quantity of chai spice mix. Fold in the flour and buttermilk alternately and stir until combined, don’t overmix. Mix together the bicarb soda and vinegar and mix into the batter.

Spoon into prepared cupcake cases and bake 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

To make the buttercream, beat the butter until it is creamy and very pale in colour. Stir in the vanilla and the rest of the chai spice mix. Slowly beat in the icing sugar about ½ cup at a time. If the buttercream is too thick add 1-2 tbs of cold milk until the desired consistency is reached.

Pipe onto cooled cupcakes, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and serve!

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Chunky Mushroom Diane Sauce

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I’ve never made a Diane Sauce before, but tonight I thought I would give it a try to go with my chicken and steamed veggies. It was so easy, but I think my version may be a little different from the “classic” recipe. For one thing, it doesn’t have Brandy. But that’s ok, it was so delicious that I WOLFED it down as soon as I sat down to eat it. It’s also a little chunkier with loads of mushrooms but it still had a lovely rich and creamy texture. I think normally you serve Diane Sauce with steak, but it went with chicken perfectly. Actually, it tasted amazing with the peas! Here’s my recipe, enough for two or three.

Chunky Mushroom Diane Sauce

  • 200g mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced finely
  • 1 TBS worcestershire sauce
  • 1 TBS tomato paste
  • 1 TBS cooking cream (I use light)

Saute the mushrooms, garlic and onion until cooked and reduced. Add the worcestershire sauce and tomato paste and cook for a few minutes before adding the cooking cream and stirring through. If you would like the sauce less chunky, add a little water and stir until desired consistency. Serve immediately!

I used Philadelphia Cooking Cream (light) and this sauce ended up 127 calories in total, so divided by two or three it becomes a delicious and healthy sauce.

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