I have long been a fan of green tea – whether the tea for drinking or any food that is green tea flavored.
This is my simple go-to green tea cupcake. The best part is – a lot of this cupcake can be make-ahead. For example – you can bake the stumps and freeze them for later use! If you’re ever missing cupcakes, just thaw overnight and frost to serve.
The little flowers can also be made ahead. I used royal icing to pipe the flowers almost a year ago, and keep them in a box for whenever I need them. They make cute decorations for cupcakes, and easily make a plain cupcake look fancier. Since royal icing is a bit of a pain to make, I recommend making a bunch of these flowers in one sitting to save for future use.
After you pipe the flowers, let them draw overnight, and store them in a box (does not have to be airtight). Although they take some time to make, the overall time saved by having home-made decorations on-hand whenever I want some pretty cupcakes fast makes the initial time spent making these flowers well spent. In case you were wondering if you can eat the flower, the answer is — yes you can, but it won’t taste very yummy. In general royal icing decorations are very pretty as the stiff icing allows you much control over the shape of your decorations. However they are for the most part not meant to be eaten – (they taste like cardboard!).
- 1.5 cups all purpose flour
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup soy milk
- ½ cup canola oil
- 2 tablespoons white vinegar
- 1 teaspoon imitation vanilla extract
- ⅔ cup Earth Balance vegan margarine
- ⅓ cup non-hydrogenated vegetable shortening (I used Spectrum)
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- ½ tsp white imitation vanilla extract (keeps colors light)
- 2 tbsp soy milk
- 1¼ teaspoon green tea powder
- Follow instructions here
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line a cupcake pan with cupcake liners.
- Mix dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Mix wet ingredients in a separate small bowl and then pour into the dry ingredients. Stir to incorporate.
- Drop batter into cupcake liners. I use a 1 tablespoon cookie scoop to measure out about 1.5 tablespoons of batter per cupcake. Bake until inserted toothpick comes out clean, about 25 minutes.
- Cream Earth Balance and vegetable shortening together with an electric mixer. Add in all remaining frosting ingredients except the soy milk. Cream together, adding 1 teaspoon soy milk at a time (use how much soy milk you add to control the thickness of the frosting). Feel free to add more or less green tea powder depending on how intense you want the flavor to be.
- Once cupcakes are done, cool completely.
- Pipe frosting with a large star tip (I like the Wilton 1M, Ateco 826 and Ateco 829). Add Sprinkles of your choosing!
- Follow linked instructions from Wilton on making a simple royal icing.
- Swirl 2-3 drops purple food color gel into about ½ cup of your royal icing till it is the desired shade of lavender.
- Fill purple icing in a piping bag fitted with a comma shaped tip (e.g. Wilton tip 102).
- Cut a few small 1inch by 1 inch squares of wax paper, and glue to your flower nail with a glue stick.
- Pipe flower petal with the tip 102. With your dominant hand (right for me), make the shape of a bent "n" where the open ends touch by pressing on the icing bag to release purple icing and rotating the flower pin with your other hand to form the "n" shape of each petal. Make 5 petals, slightly overlapping each other. As you make each petal, rotate the flower nail clockwise so that you do not need to move your right hand as you pipe (or vice versa if you are left-handed).
- Mix 2-3 drops yellow food color gel into about ½ cup white royal icing to get the desired shade of yellow (feel free to add more or less color).
- Fit yellow icing to a wilton 3A tip. Make 2 yellow dots in the center for the "pollen"
- Remove the wax paper that has your flower on it from the flower nail, and let it dry overnight. Then store in a container (does not absolutely have to be airtight). These will be good pretty much forever! The flower is more for decoration, so pick it off when you are about to eat the cupcake.
Here is a great video of how to make the apple blossom flower I found on youtube. I highly recommend watching it and re-reading the directions before you try the piping, it'll be much easier!
Royal icing dries very quickly. Make sure to cap the piping bag or the container the icing is in while you are not using it so the dried icing does not clog your piping tip or crust in the container.