In winter months, masala chai is made in my house at least once a day. This spicy-sweet Indian tea is usually the warm treat needed to get through Korea’s bitter cold days. My favorite beverage was my muse for this recipe.
Desiring to make a tasty vegan muffin, I experimented with different ingredients before I was satisfied with the outcome. I used coconut oil in place of egg for its healthful properties, and used whole wheat bran for extra fiber. Using coconut milk resulted in a dense, creamy muffin. With this recipe, now you can make chai and eat it, too!
Ingredients (makes 8-10 muffins)
1 cup bran
1 and 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 and 1/4 cup coconut or almond milk
3 tablespoons honey + a bit more for garnish
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 tablespoons shredded coconut, unsweetened
1 teaspoon black, loose-leaf tea or the tea from one teabag
Seeds from 4-5 cardamom pods, ground
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla
In a large bowl, combine the bran, flour, baking powder, cinnamon, cardamom, and 1 tablespoon of the coconut flakes until mixed well.
If, like mine, your honey and coconut oil are solidified due to cold weather, gently warm them in the oven until they are liquefied. Meanwhile, heat the milk (coconut or almond) in a saucepan over low heat on the stove top until just warm. Add the loose leaf tea and vanilla to the saucepan and turn off the heat.
Once your honey and oil are liquefied, add them to the dry ingredients and mix well. Immediately add the warmed contents of the saucepan and mix well.
Grease a muffin tin with coconut oil and add the batter to each cup (my batter made nine muffins) 3/4 of the way up.
Bake your muffins for 15-18 minutes at 350 degrees F. Be sure to check on them frequently. They can be considered done when a toothpick stuck in the middle of one comes out clean. When done, remove the muffins and set them on a counter to cool.
While the muffins are cooling, toast the other tablespoon of shredded coconut on the stove top using a clean, dry, frying pan. Use low heat, and stir or shake the pan continuously to avoid burning the coconut. When most of the flakes are a golden brown, turn off the heat and set the coconut aside.
Carefully remove the muffins from the baking tin. Spread the top of each muffin with a dab of honey and sprinkle on the toasted coconut.