Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Chinese Five Spice Chocolate Cupcakes


It's day 3 of Vegan Mofo and thus far I'm managing to keep up with posting! My theme this year is My Spice Rack. I've got so many spices piled up in my kitchen that I thought I had better start thinking of ways to use them all up! Yesterday I posted a Spicy Chickpea Salad with Olive Hummus Dressing which used 4 spices from my shelf. Today, only one, but it's an interesting one!

Chinese Five Spice
Chinese Five Spice is a blend of star anise, fennel seeds, cassia, black pepper and cloves. It is used in many Asian recipes but usually in combination with meat, although it can be added to stir fried vegetables. In place of the meat, it could be used as a rub or a marinade for tofu or other meat substitutes. But I wanted to do something a bit different with it. So I made dessert, a bit unusual! The zing of the Five Spice gives these Chocolate Cupcakes something pretty special and a couple of my friends went pretty crazy over these babies. Start of adding just a 1/2 tsp of five spice to the mix and then taste it. If you can't really taste the Chinese Five Spice then add some more and taste again. I ended up using a whole teaspoon, but it's something you can make to taste.

Reference: Hemphill, 2006
For my month of spices I'm using Spice Notes and Recipes by Ian Hemphill as my reference tool to learn about spices and for all the information above. Thanks Ian for writing such a great and informative book! 


Chinese Five Spice Chocolate Cupcakes

Ingredients
1 cup oat milk (or soy milk)
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup canola oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup wholemeal plain flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon bicarb soda
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon Chinese Five Spice (or to taste)

To Make
1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.
2. In a large bowl whisk together the oat milk, sugar, canola oil and vanilla extract.
3. Add the remaining ingredients and whisk until all combined.
4. Fill your cupcake baking tray with liners and fill them 3/4 full of batter.
5. Bake for 23 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.
6. Allow to cool. To serve, dust with icing sugar or ice with a chocolate buttercream icing or a chocolate ganache - whatever you feel like!

Makes 12 cupcakes.

Chinese Five Spice Chocolate Cupcakes pictured here with my

15 comments:

  1. What a great challenge Keely. I'm the same my pantry is overflowing with spices and it's nice to use them up and buy fresh packets. I've made sweet potato muffins with five spice but never included it with chocolate. Sounds really good and I love that your friends went crazy for them, that makes these a must try! x

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    1. Oh yum, sweet potato and five spice muffins sounds delish! Have you got a recipe up for them?

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  2. This is a great theme! and these cupcakes look *amazing*. I would never have thought to combine Chinese Five Spice with chocolate cupcakes.

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    1. It was a surprisingly great combination!

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  3. what an amazing dessert...chocoholic's dream come true with those glistening layers of swirly icing on top....beautiful food clicks :-)

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  4. Wow! I'm so surprised that this flavour combination works.

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    1. It's the new chilli & chocolate :)

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  5. They look great:) Do you have a preferred buttercream recipe?

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    1. I've had a couple of people ask me so I'll post up my recipe in the next couple of days :)

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  6. I mean, technically you used 5 spices today, right? :D

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    1. Haha you're right! I didn't think of that but I totally did :)

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  7. Oh my gosh! This looks so creative and amazing! Will have to try this out! :)

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  8. Wow! I have this spice but NEVER would have thought to put it in a cupcake. So creative and this looks out of this world.

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