these cupcakes were featured on All Things Cupcake in their weekly cupcake collection
i've been wanting to give these a try for ages - vegan cupcakes from the VCTOTW book, so today was the day. they were really simple to make - i didn't even need to take out the mixer for these. the smell of the batter was very very aromatic (there was cardamom in the recipe...again...i'm a glutton for punishment!) however, i was disappointed that the recipe only yielded 12 cupcakes. generally i can get anything from 16-24 cupcakes from most batters so it was weird to be stretching it to try and fit 12 because they weren't even filled up to the usual height. i like my cupcakes 'up-size' because generally i only want one and so i like to get the most-ess out of it! if i'd have up-sized this batter i might have gotten 6! anyway, popped them in the oven and the smell was just lovely...really smelled like chai that i remember drinking from Coffee Bean in Singapore.
once they were out, i let them cool and got to work on the icing. ok, so i know that they are supposed to be vegan, but no-one in my family is actually vegan so i could get away with it and my brother has a penchant for buttercream icing! i made chocolate this time and piped it on. the taste of the icing was delicious - very chocolate-y, very good! iced the cupcakes and then came the taste-test. my brother tucked in straight away and was happy. as for me, well, first of all, i was a bit disappointed by how much they stuck to the cupcake case...so much so, that the whole bottom was left behind on the paper and it seemed like half the cupcake had gone MIA. not very attractive. i wondered if it was because i had substituted the canola oil for sunflower oil in the recipe? wonder if anyone else has ever experienced this? i normally never have a problem with cupcakes sticking, and i have used both oil and butter in recipes and usually everything is fine. hmmmm, shall have to ponder this a little more. but back to the taste, it was very good, the spices tasted so warm and comforting and blended really well with the chocolate.
i really liked these and perhaps might use the recipe base again to make a non-vegan variety because i definitely noticed a difference in the texture of the cake - more dense and heavy than non-vegan varieties. you miss that airy fairy feel that you get when you cream butter and sugar and of course, add the eggs. but i think it's good to try these things out. educate yourself a bit. photos were taken in the garden (because Spring weather is still happily hanging around - but i am expecting it to go at any moment!) and i couldn't help but use some of the foliage.