Spiced Chai Cupcake

Spiced Chai Tea Cupcake2

Last month I went to see Life of Pi in 3D at the Imax cinema. It was a brilliant movie with stunning visual effects. I read the book a few years back and liked it.

The movie is about belief, your relationship with God, people, animals and nature. Pi has a strict and realistic father, who always tries to teach him the cruel reality of the world; while his mother, having a kind heart, understands more about his spiritual seaching. I think it’s interesting how he tries to embrace different religions and avidly practises different rituals. Though, the core message is his faith in God, the grace and truth he has been taught give him the courage and power to survive the disaster.

I particularly remember how he struggles when he has to kill a fish to survive, being a vegetarian, he cries and cries saying sorry while thanking God for saving him. It’s also sweet of him to try to take care of Richard Parker, the tiger who, although scares Pi, gives him companionship, which becomes his motivation to continue. The night scene where all the fishes form the face of his mother is very touching as well. Of course the second version of story is scary, disturbing and terribly cruel, but I’d rather believe that he made the journey with Richard Parker. There was also one line that touches me deeply: “All of life is an act of letting go but what hurts the most is not taking a moment to say goodbye.” Just like how he loses his family, and how Richard Parker never turns his head back once they reach land. I think back on my life and there were also moments like this. Some of those memories keep haunting me and I can’t let go. A proper farewell is important for one to move on.

Anyways, on a lighter note, I made some cupcakes, inspired by Indian chai tea and spices. I love Indian food and how they utilize various of spices to increase the flavor. The only disadvantage is that sometimes it’s too hot for me to eat, or the food doesn’t look so appealing. :P

Health Index: 3/5 (2 to 3 times a week)
Kitchen Gadgets: Oven
Serves: 12

1 cup of soy milk
2 tea bags of chai tea
¼ cup canola oil
½ cup soy yogurt
½ cup sugar
½ tsp vanilla extract
1⅓ cups wholewheat pastry flour
¼ tsp baking soda
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp sea salt
1 tsp cinnamon powder
1 tsp cardamom powder
½ tsp ginger powder
¼ tsp clove powder

1. Preheat the oven to 175°C (350°F).
2. In a small saucepan, bring the soymilk to the boil, then add the tea bags. Turn off the heat and allow the milk to cool and the tea to infuse.
Into a big bowl, sift the flour, baking power and baking soda, salt and spices, set aside.
3. In another big bowl, add the flavored soymilk, yogurt, canola oil, sugar and vanilla extract, mix everything together vigorously with a hand whisk.
4. Sift the dry ingredients into the wet mixture, then use a balloon whisk to mix together, until there are no lumps. Never beat it!
5. Scoop ¼ to ⅓ of a cup of batter into each muffin cup.
6. Bake for 25 minutes, they are done when an inserted toothpick comes out clean.